Democrat Jeanna Repass said she decided to run for Kansas Secretary of State when she saw the growing number of challenges to Democracy, especially the core premise of “one person, one vote.” 

The daughter of a civil rights activist, Overland Park resident Repass said she recalled her mother’s words, “If not now, then when, and if not you, then who?” With that memory, she stepped full charge into her goal of becoming the state’s chief election officer.  

In seeking public office, she left a career that saw her work in broadcast-media management for radio stations and in various nonprofit capacities, such as director of urban outreach for the Church of the Resurrection in Leawood, KS, and leader of programs to feed school kids in summer and prevent youth violence in Kansas City, according to her website. She’s also a mom of three.

In Kansas, the Secretary of State is responsible for the administration of all national and state elections including overseeing voter registration and voting accessibility.  The secretary of state is also responsible for handling registration of all businesses operating in the state.  

Like many other states, there is a movement in Kansas to minimize voter accessibility in the name of fair elections. In fact, former Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach was an early leader in the movement to limit citizen access to voting.  

Secretary of State Scott Schwab, while not as extreme, has implemented a number of policies that have built on Kobach’s work.  

Recently, the Kansas Court of Appeals ruled Schwab violated the Kansas Open Records Act by withholding information on how many of the 45,000 provisional ballots cast across the state actually were counted. Despite the ruling against him, Schwab still refuses to make the information available and seems determined to spend taxpayer money to appeal the ruling all the way to the state’s Supreme Court.  

“It’s time to take the office of Secretary of State back to the people,” Repass said. “It no longer needs to be a politicized office. It belongs to the people of Kansas to protect our right to vote.”

Repass has said she would protect ballot drop boxes and seek the enforcement of state law that would allow registered voters to cast a ballot at any precinct in their county of residence.  

If elected, Repass would be the first woman of color to hold statewide office in Kansas. 

She has said she would protect ballot drop boxes and seek the enforcement of state law that would allow registered voters to cast a ballot at any precinct.

In addition to ballot access, here are few of Repass’s other platform positions:  

​1.  Election Security – At the heart of our democracy are free and fair elections.  

2.  Corporate Records – The Kansas Secretary of State office is the official repository for corporate filings. These records are difficult to access and the Secretary of State’s office hasn’t shown the transparency Kansas taxpayers deserve.

3.  Campaign Finance and Lobbyist Disclosures – The Secretary of State maintains copies of all submitted campaign finance reports and lobbyist disclosure reports. Repass will prioritize transparency and modernization of the computer systems where these records are kept.

“I really would like us to heal from the vitriol and mean-spiritedness that has divided our country,” said Repass. “I truly believe it is time for all Kansans to come together.”

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Bonita Gooch

Since 1996, Bonita has served as as Editor-in-Chief of The Community Voice newspaper. As the owner, she has guided the Wichita-based publication’s growth in reach across the state of Kansas and into...