SB 1070 Helper Kris Kobach Takes the Ken Bennett Route on the "Birther" Issue
Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach has so much Arizona right-wing-nuttery in his blood that he ought to get tested.
As one of the creators of Senate Bill 1070, he's part Russell Pearce. As the former instructor on immigration matters for the Maricopa County Sheriff's Office, he's part Sheriff Joe Arpaio. Now, as he entertains a "birther" theory that put President Obama's ballot eligibility in the air, he's become part Ken Bennett, Arizona's Secretary of State.
Kobach and the rest of Kansas' State Objections board gathered yesterday to hear challenges to the candidacy of four candidates -- three minor-party candidates, and President Barack Obama.
According to the Kansas City Star's account, the complainant believes (surprise!) that Obama isn't a natural-born citizen.
"Kobach moved to delay the decision until Monday so the state could get records from Hawaii where Obama was born," the Star says. "The panel also wants information that was submitted in Arizona and Mississippi to certify Obama's eligibility on the ballots in those states."
Kobach said he wasn't giving "credence" to the complaint, but a paper in Topeka says Kobach also said he doesn't think it's "frivolous," either.
This appears to be a similar case to Bennett's, as Arizona's elections chief got himself involved in the "birther" nonsense simply by entertaining the notion that President Obama's birth certificate is a forgery.
Bennett actually had to put out a press release stating, "I am not a 'birther,'" but he continued to use the words "Obama" and "Kenya" in the same sentence, and also claimed Obama was hiding other records -- while he was insisting that Hawaii verify documents related to Obama's birth.
Although the Kansas challenge doesn't appear to dispute the authenticity of Obama's birth certificate, Kobach's still going on a records hunt for documentation in Hawaii and the information handed over to Arizona.
Perhaps it's a coincidence (ha), but Bennett is Mitt Romney's Arizona campaign co-chair, and Kobach describes himself as an "informal adviser" to Romney.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you'll never miss Phoenix New Times' biggest stories.