Secretary of State Kris Kobach is planning to unveil his office’s first charges of voter fraud soon. Lawmakers last session gave Kobach’s office the power to prosecute voter fraud. Kobach said in a recent interview that it will have to be soon, because some possible violations occurred during the 2010 election.
“There’s a five-year statute of limitations for bringing any prosecution, so we have to get those out the door by November. It will be the month of September and October that we bring those,” says Kobach.
Kobach expects he’ll be prosecuting cases of double voting, which the state's ballot security measures can't prevent.
“The only real way to reduce it is to deter it and the way we deter it is prosecuting it, getting the message out that we can tell when it happens, we’ll catch you after the fact and there’s going to be a heavy fine,” says Kobach.
Kansas lawmakers gave the secretary of state’s office the power to prosecute voting crimes earlier this year. Kobach has argued that voter fraud has not been adequately prosecuted. Some local prosecutors opposed the move, saying they have taken on voter fraud cases. U.S. Attorney Barry Grissom has said Kobach’s office never forwarded any cases of voter fraud to him.