Empower Wisconsin | Oct. 7, 2020
By M.D. Kittle
MADISON — It seems the Milwaukee Election Commission got the message that, while it might be fun to have Bango and Bernie mix with the liberal get-out-the-vote crowd, doing so could constitute electioneering.
The commission on Tuesday announced that it will not use the Milwaukee Brewers baseball stadium or the Milwaukee Bucks’ home court as in-person absentee voting sites for the Nov. 3 election. No more team mascots — the Bucks’ Bango and the Brewers’ Bernie and assorted racing sausages — popping in, either, it would appear.
“Unfortunately, the addition of these two sites could be legally challenged due to a recent court ruling, and we don’t want to do anything that could risk a City of Milwaukee voter’s ballot being counted,” said Claire Woodall-Vogg, executive director of the Milwaukee Election Commission. “We want residents of Milwaukee to feel complete and unwavering confidence that their ballot will be counted in the election and this action reflects that commitment.”
There’s no mention of the Republican Party of Wisconsin’s warning last week that the commission could face legal problems by holding its vote harvesting rallies at the professional sports venues.
“While we can certainly appreciate that Wisconsin sports are an integral part of the community, we are extremely concerned that usage of sports players, mascots, etc. would be present while voting is taking place at these locations,” the RPW states in a letter. “Under Wisconsin Statute, this would likely constitute illegal electioneering.”
“While the media will try to paint this as trivial, the risks of players and mascots present while people are casting their ballots is an extreme risk for the integrity of our elections and violates the law,” the letter asserts.
They called that one. The media and their Democratic Party friends mocked the RPW’s concerns, despite the real election law behind them. When the Milwaukee Election Commission actually stopped and considered the law (wonders never cease), they really had no choice in the matter. Then, Dems and their marketing pals in the state mainstream media got serious, describing the GOP’s insistence on following election law, “voter suppression.”
“Today’s decision is a win for the rule of law and deals a blow to Democrats who continue to try and press for last minute changes state election statutes,” RPW spokesman Alec Zimmerman said.
“We’ll continue to monitor the situation in Dane and Milwaukee counties while we work in partnership with the RNC and President Trump’s campaign to ensure the integrity of this election.”