Assembly GOP Set to Wrap Up Fall Session
With Attacks on Wisconsin Voter Rights
No Clearer Example of Fraud in Wisconsin Than GOP’s Attempt to
Rig Voting Rules for Partisan Advantage
One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross strongly denounced the latest GOP attempts to rig elections in their favor, and the impact on legal voters saying, “Yet another attempt at a state voter ID requirement and effectively eliminating evening and weekend early voting, means exercising the right to vote in Wisconsin would become more complicated and less convenient. And most despicable of all is that these laws are intended not to improve voting, but to boost the GOP’s political ambitions.”
A voter ID law passed last session by the Republican legislature is currently enjoined from enforcement by a state court that found it unconstitutional. An amicus brief from One Wisconsin Institute accepted by the state court as part of the ongoing state litigation notes that voters in Wisconsin have significantly less access to Department of Motor Vehicle offices where IDs are available than Indiana voters. The brief also challenges the notion that voter ID is needed to prevent widespread voting impropriety, as there are very few reported cases of improper voting and no prosecuted instances of voter impersonation in the state.
Making a bad a voter ID law even worse is a scheme for segregating ballots cast by legal voters based on their economic circumstances, and authorizing the investigation of these voter's finances and tossing out of their legally cast vote after Election Day.
Ross termed the provision, “An open invitation to the worst elements of the right-wing to engage in the harassment and intimidation of legal Wisconsin voters doing their civic duty and participating in elections.”
As if trying to prove the adage, “it can always get worse,” the Assembly GOP also intends to pass legislation effectively ending evening and weekend early voting most heavily utilized in urban areas, including non-partisan “souls to the polls” drives organized by faith communities.
In November 2012 nearly 400,000 Wisconsin residents took advantage of early voting and roughly one in four ballots cast in 2008 were cast early under the current law provisions being attacked by the Assembly Republicans. In addition, it was estimated roughly 300,000 legal Wisconsin voters could be prevented from accessing their right to the franchise under a state voter ID law.
Ross concluded, “There’s no clearer example of the real voting fraud in Wisconsin than the outrageous attempts of the GOP today to manipulate the rules on voting to give themselves an unfair partisan advantage.