TOPEKA (CAPITOL BUREAU) --- A New York City man running for Kansas Governor has been removed from the ballot after an objection was filed by the Republican Party of Kansas.
"I enjoy being a very unique choice," Andy Maskin said during an interview last week when he visited Topeka. During his visit to the state, Maskin wore a shirt with his campaign slogan on it, "Kansas could do worse."
Maskin paid more than $2,000 to appear on the August ballot, but the State Objections Board voted the GOP candidate can't run for Kansas Governor.
"This is entirely about if the Governor of Kansas has to be in Kansas," explained Kansas Attorney General Derek Schmidt.
The New Yorker is one of many non-residents who expressed interest in running for the office, but is the only person who actually filed.
"I obviously think that under current law I'm eligible," Maskin told the objections board over the phone Tuesday.
Last week, the Republican Party of Kansas sent a letter to the Secretary of State's Office objecting to Maskin's eligibility, which is why the board was called to weigh in. The Governor's Chief of Counsel said he didn't think Maskin should be allowed to run for the state's highest position.
"I think Kansans probably have the good common sense to understand that the person running to be their Governor should be a fellow Kansan," explained Brant Laue.
The board voted 2-1 to reject Maskin's candidacy. The Secretary of State's Office said it wanted to keep him on the ballot.
"The legislature had well in excess of 150 years to address this matter in a definitive and plain way, and they have not," explained the Assistant Secretary of State, Eric Rucker.
Schmidt has also filed a lawsuit in Shawnee County District Court to keep non-residents like Maskin off the ballot. The case is expected to be heard next week. Maskin says he’ll wait for the court's decision before moving forward with any legal action. The Legislature passed a bill this session that would prevent non-residents from running for statewide office. If signed into law, the bill would take effect in 2019.