Secretary of State
image of the Kansas Secretary of State seal
Memorial Hall, 1st Floor
120 SW 10th Avenue
Topeka, KS 66612-1594
(785) 296-4564


For Immediate Release
Monday, April 18, 2005

Contact Information
Jesse Borjon, Communications Director
Office of the Secretary of State
(785) 296-4580


Topeka, KS – Today, Kansas Secretary of State Ron Thornburgh testified before the Carter-Baker Commission on Federal Election Reform at American University in Washington, D.C. The hearing of this bipartisan Commission is part of a six month review of the electoral process in the United States and will result in a recommendation on how to improve it.

“The Help America Vote Act passed by Congress and signed by President Bush in October of 2002 has already had a positive impact, even though it has not been fully funded and has only been partially implemented,” stated Thornburgh.

“Congress should focus on funding the requirements of HAVA and not on passing additional legislation to federalize election administration. HAVA was the result of a truly bipartisan effort to improve elections while respecting states’ rights to regulate them, implementation of the Act should be fully realized and evaluated before more changes are made to the electoral process.”

The number of votes lost through administrative errors dropped by 42% in 2004 compared to the 2000 election. That number is projected to get better as more states implement statewide voter registration databases by January 1, 2006. In Kansas, for the first time, every polling place was fully accessible and ADA compliant. These are only a few of the accomplishments by states as a result of HAVA.

The Commission is comprised of 21 distinguished members from the major political parties, academics and civic leaders from nonpartisan groups.

Secretary of State Ron Thornburgh's testimony transcript