Officials at the Kansas Secretary of State’s office have confirmed that Angus Woolley, a three-year-old Wirehaired Vizsla is not eligible to run for governor.
Terran Woolley of Hutchinson, Kansas, filed papers for his dog to run for governor after a report by the Kansas City Star said that the state had no law laying out requirements for gubernatorial candidates, according to The Hill.
The Secretary of State’s office, though, pulled the leash on the pup’s candidacy, saying that little Angus was ineligible.
“A dog will not be allowed to file and put its name on the ballot,” state spokesman Bryan Caskey said.
“There’s several laws that reference that the governor has to be an individual or a person, and so we are relying on that, and if a dog comes in to file for office, we will not allow that,” Caskey added.
Caskey may have brought the dog’s application upon himself when he told the Star that he was unsure of how the state would handle a non-human candidate trying to run for office.
“I’m not sure how to answer that,” Caskey said when asked what would happen if a dog filed to run for governor. “Because I cannot point to a law that sets any qualifications to run for governor. So a dog has never tried to file — I don’t know what would happen if one tried to. … I can’t point you to a law that says anything about the qualifications to run for governor.”
After Angus Woolley filed, though, it appears that officials found their reason quickly enough.
The 2018 election had already garnered national attention when six teenaged boys filed to run for Kansas’s top office. The candidacies set the state scrambling to put new rules in place laying out requirements for office.
Current Kansas law lays out no minimum requirements for gubernatorial candidates. In the Star article, Caskey noted there are no qualifications, “no age, no residency, no experience. Nothing.”
Lawmakers, though, were brought to heel and are now rushing to change that with the debacle unfolding before their eyes.
Last week a legislative committee hastily introduced a bill that would bar people under age 18 from running for statewide office. But after Angus was shot down, it is likely that the bill will also see amendments to add that candidates must also be human.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.