Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Gov. Evers Vetoes of Hyper Partisan Anti Voter Measures is Good News for Democracy

Tuesday – August 10, 2021
Tuesday morning, Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers vetoed five hyper partisan, anti-voter measures strongly opposed by Common Cause in Wisconsin (CC/WI) that would have unnecessarily made voting even more difficult and burdensome in a state that already has in place one of the most extreme and restrictive voter photo ID laws in the nation. None of these five measures had bipartisan support nor were any devised in consultation with any of the nonpartisan voting rights organizations in Wisconsin, including CC/WI.

The Governor's veto of these measures is welcome and will help to preserve the ability of Wisconsinites to continue to have their legitimate and necessary voices to be heard at the ballot box. These vetoed measures include Senate Bill 203, Senate Bill 204, Senate Bill 205, Senate Bill 210 and Senate Bill 212.

These anti-democratic, voter suppression measures would have greatly restricted absentee voting in the state by greatly limiting who a voter can choose to have return their ballot and severely limit where those ballots can be returned. They prohibit altogether the perfectly legitimate, safe absentee ballot return events like "Democracy in the Park" in Madison which enabled thousands of voters to legally return their absentee ballots, safely to legally deputized voting officials. They would force disabled and elderly voters who are classified as "indefinitely confined" to reapply for that designation for each election instead of just once and make the process for being able to be so designated much more difficult and burdensome to qualify. They would unnecessarily require any voter who opts to vote by absentee ballot to reapply for each election to be able to do so instead of being able to designate that they wish that to be ongoing, as is the case now. They would make it a felony for a nursing or retirement home employee to assist an occupant to apply for or to complete an absentee ballot and they would make it a felony for an election clerk to lawfully "cure" an absentee ballot by simply adding the address of a witness who signed but may have inadvertently neglected to fill it in themselves. Had this been in place in 2020 several thousand absentee ballots would have disqualified needlessly. And finally, they would have reduced from eight to three feet the distance required for an election observer to stand at a polling place during a recount of an election which could allow for greater intimidation and the spreading of disease.

CC/WI strongly urges the Wisconsin Legislature to cease and desist in the formulation and passage of further partisan anti-voter measures which are being devised on the basis of conspiracy theories and lies about the conduct of the 2020 election. We congratulate Gov. Evers for vetoing these measures and trust that he will continue to do so in the future, as the need arises.

Jay Heck
608/256-2686 (office)
608/512-9363 (cell)

Common Cause in Wisconsin
152 Johnson St, Suite 212
Madison, WI 53703

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