- Associated Press - Friday, January 29, 2016

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - The new election commissioner in the most populous county in Kansas is a former legislator who is the local Republican Party chairman.

Secretary of State Kris Kobach announced Friday the appointment of former state Rep. Ronnie Metsker of Overland Park to the elections job in Johnson County.

Metsker will replace Brian Newby, who left the post in November to become executive director of the federal Election Assistance Commission.

The secretary of state appoints election commissioners for the state’s four most populous counties. Elections in the other 101 counties are run by elected county clerks. Kobach also is a Republican.

Metsker served in the House in 2007 and 2008 before becoming Johnson County GOP chairman. He also is president of a faith-based group advocating for civility in public debates.

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