The Buzz

TheChat: Kansas state senator lashes out at critics of Kris Kobach’s voter-purge push


Good morning.

▪ “This kind of reasonable kindness that we provide has gotten us into this problem, and yet we get damned in national press as being horrible people who want to eliminate voters for this attempt to do things in a reasonable and even-handed way.” — Kansas state Sen. Steve Fitzgerald, a Leavenworth Republican, on all the criticism directed at Secretary of State Kris Kobach who is moving to purge suspended voters who haven’t provided proof of citizenship.

In Kansas, voters often have to produce a birth certificate when they register to vote. If they don’t, they’re placed on a “suspended voter” list. Voting officials have said numerous attempts have been made to contact these folks to complete the registration process. Fitzgerald said the rules are clear. Others pointed out that most people don’t carry birth certificates with them.

▪ “The EPA’s Clean Power rule effectively eliminates Missouri’s competitive advantage as a low energy-cost state.” — Attorney General Chris Koster explaining why he’ll join a lawsuit against the Environmental Protection Agency with more than a dozen other states to block rules meant to cut carbon emissions.

Ameren and other Missouri utilities had urged Koster, a Democrat who’s running for governor in 2016, to join the lawsuit. Most of the other states involved in the state are led by Republicans. (link via

▪ “The EPA has no business regulating ponds and puddles in Missouri and across our country.” — Missouri Sen. Roy Blunt, a Republican, on the decision by the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals to suspend the EPA’s burdensome “Waters of the United States” rule.

Blunt was hardly the only office-holder applauding the ruling. “This rule was another example of executive overreach and today the courts agreed that the hardworking Missourians’ private property should belong to themselves and not the EPA,” Blunt said in a statement.

▪ “Let me be clear: That conduct is not acceptable in our Missouri courts. We will do all that we can to ensure that it does not continue.” — state Supreme Court Chief Justice Patricia Breckenridge on the race-based disparties that reports have identified as existing in Ferguson municipal court.

The reports Breckenridge referred to identified practices such as imposing unwritten rules, or rules made up on the spot and requiring defendants to show up in court for a host of minor offenses, such as failure to dispose of leaf debris.