Kansas GOP Gubernatorial Primary - conflict of interest?

Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach was up against current Governor Jeff Colyer (former Lt. Gov. under Sam Brownback) in the Kansas GOP primary. At the moment they are still saying the race is too close to call, both at 41% and separated by about 500 votes with about 95% of the precincts counted.

So assuming this comes down to a recount, it will obviously wind up under the watchful eye of the Secretary of State’s office. How does this work? Does Kobach recuse himself from the recount? Do we start shouting “rigged election” and “voter fraud” when he declares himself the winner?

Right now Kobach leads by 191 votes with 100% of precincts reporting. There was a total of 311,009 votes cast in the GOP primary. Although there are still mail-in ballots to be counted, it appears that Kobach will be the winner. He will face Democrat Laura Kelly in November. Kelly is a state senator from Topeka.

There was some talk that Kobach would be a weaker candidate than Colyer and thus easier to beat in November. I disagree. Greg Orman is running as an independent and will certainly siphon Democratic voters, thus paving the way for Kobach to be the next governor of Kansas.

I guess we Kansans are gonna get what we deserve. Dammit.

I assume it’s no different than George Bush’s Florida campaign chair being the Florida Secretary of State in 2000.

Speaking of adventures in election integrity…:mad:

It’s not like the Governor of Kansas is completely powerless. I’m sure the Secretary of State’s minions will be closely watched by the Governor’s minions and every possibly disputed ballot will be checked and rechecked before both sides sue and the whole thing ends up in court.

“Who could imagine they would freak out in Kansas?”

  • Frank Zappa

Yeah, Kobach says he will not recuse himself from the recount.

Which the Kansas City Star editorial page is calling “an indefensible decision”, saying that it could “further damage the voters’ confidence in the outcome and faith in the state’s election system.”

It doesn’t help that Johnson County KS (suburban Kansas City) had some serious issues with their new voting machines, causing delays both with voting and in determining the results.

Maybe, but it this primary fight is a knock-out drag-down brawl, with hurt feelings on both sides, then “let’s you and him fight” is certainly good for the Dems.

If Kobach wins but deosn’t recuse himself, then I can imagine a significant portion of Colyer supporters feeling cheated by Koback to the point that they stay home or vote for Orman out of protest.

I certainly agree. And there are still about 10,000 provisional ballots to be counted, so the final result is still to be determined. Link

Again true, but that also reinforces my original point. There are many more Republicans than Democrats in Kansas. A vote for the independent, or not voting at all, favors the Republican candidate.

I wouldn’t dispute the idea that Kobach would be favored in the election (since “Republican wins election in Kansas” is the least surprising headline of all time), but I’m curious as to why you think Orman would siphon votes from Democrats in particular? He appears to have been affiliated with both major parties in the past and sort of his own idiosyncratic thing now, maybe not that attractive to a more motivated Democratic electorate in 2018. I’d think that he might be more attractive to nominal Republicans who don’t like Kobach in particular. But I’m always happy to get educated about things.

I need to clarify that statement. I believe that Orman will siphon votes from those who would likely vote for the Democratic candidate as opposed to the Republican candidate. In Kansas, in my opinion, we have 3 parties: Conservative Republicans, Moderate Republicans, and Democrats. The only way for a Democrat to get elected to a state-wide office is for the Moderate Republicans to join the Democrats in voting for the Democratic candidate, as we did in 2002 and 2006 when we elected Kathleen Sibelius as governor. Orman, I’m afraid, will appeal to some of the Moderates as well as some of the Democrats, and thus will split the vote of those two factions.

Apologies for being unclear, and you were correct to ask for further explanation.

Well, now, this is interesting. Thomas County, in western Kansas, is now reporting that the results they faxed to the Secretary of State’s office showed that Colyer had 522 votes to 466 for Kobach in the county. But the ‘official’ results list Colyer as having received 422 votes in Thomas County. If the 522 figure is correct, Kobach’s lead is now down to 91 votes.

For Kobach, “election integrity” and “faith in the election system” only apply when Democrats are being excluded.

Unless those that are voting independent or not voting are Republican Coyler supporters who are angry at Koback but would never deign to vote Democrat.

And here’s still another change in the tabulations. Haskell County has revised its vote totals. Kobach’s lead is now at 121.

True enough. But I’ll stand by my original contention that an independent candidate hurts the Democratic candidate. And I also contend that the independent candidate has virtually no chance to win a statewide election.

After his performance at trial just a few weeks ago and all that that entailed, I can’t believe that a douchebag buffoon like Kris Kobach can get anywhere near that many votes for any elected position at all.

Kansas must be a shitty, shitty place to live.

The more I look around at the current crop of Republicans, the more I think that America is a shitty, shitty place to live.

You are both not wrong.