KANSAS CITY, Kan. — Leaders in Wyandotte County are reacting to the Kansas Supreme Court's decision to uphold a congressional map that divides Wyandotte County into two districts.
The congressional map the Supreme Court ruled in favor of divides Wyandotte County along Interstate 70 and adds rural counties to the third congressional district as well as places the northern portion of the current 3rd District into the 2nd District.
“Surprised and disappointed," said Rep. Tom Burroughs. “It can be a motivator to encourage people to say, 'I’m not going to let them stop me from voting. I’m going to continue to make my voice heard. I’m going to continue to get out the vote. I’m going to continue to be activated.'”
The 3rd District is currently represented by Democratic Rep. Sharice Davids.
"I hope that although many feel their voice was not heard, they do not feel as though their voice does not matter," Davids said in a statement.
Davids' 3rd District challenger Republican Amanda Adkins acknowledges the ruling as a change in action.
“The map released today is evidence that our democratic process works," Adkins said in a statement.
Dr. Evelyn Hill works with the Justice and Equity Coalition in Wyandotte County. She said there are many issues impacting voters in the county.
“I thought that we may have a chance," Hill said. “... In this county, so many people suffer from high poverty levels which includes poor health, unemployment, no or very little affordable housing.”
Despite such challenges, she said community efforts are underway to get more people involved in the voting process.
“We have several voter rights groups that are going in neighborhoods, even now. When I say we, I mean we here in the community in Wyandotte County to get more voters participation as well as more knowledge for the average citizen around community issues that need our voters' attention,” Hill said.