Empower Wisconsin | Dec. 18, 2019
By M.D. Kittle
MADISON — Democrats on the Wisconsin Elections Commission this week voted to not follow the law — and to disregard a court order.
It was just the latest example of liberals refusing to recognize laws they do not like. And it’s costing taxpayers plenty.
To no one’s surprise, the commission on Tuesday appealed last week’s ruling by Ozaukee County Judge Paul Malloy ordering the agency to purge the state rolls of voters who apparently have moved, and to do so within 30 days of confirmation.
Malloy is asking the commission to follow state law. The commission had previously decided it would give as many as 234,000 “movers” up to two years to confirm their addresses, insisting they had the authority to do so under state law.
The Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty sued the commission, and Malloy ruled in WILL’s favor late last week.
The three Democrats on the six-member commission insist that the judge’s decision could disenfranchise thousands of voters, despite the fact that Wisconsin provides for same-day registration. They voted against following the judge’s order. The 3-3 split with Republican commission members left the matter unresolved until Tuesday’s appeal — which, coincidentally, will be heard by the liberal District IV appeals court, based in Madison.
“It’s unfortunate the Wisconsin Elections Commission is prolonging this dispute when Judge Malloy found the state agency in clear violation of state law,” WILL’s founder and president, Rick Esenberg, said in a statement following the commission’s appeal. “But we look forward to making the case, once again, that the Wisconsin Elections Commission must follow state law and protect the integrity of Wisconsin elections.”
That would be a change.
Wisconsin Democrats for years have resisted the laws passed and implemented by the Republican-controlled Legislature and former Republican Gov. Scott Walker. From collective-bargaining reform to voter ID laws, Dems have played the resistance role, suing the state at every turn.
Most recently, liberals sued to stop laws passed late last year before Walker left office. The measures took away some authority from the executive branch in advance of Democrats Gov. Tony Evers and Attorney General Josh Kaul taking office. More than anything, the changes checked the growing power of the state’s bureaucracy.
The lawsuits, which liberals have mostly lost, and other legal battles over the so-called lame duck session, have cost Wisconsin taxpayers north of $2 million so far.
Not happy with the budget passed by the Republican majority this year, Evers decided he would re-write a portion of it with his veto pen to boost education funding by about $65 million, the Legislature, the state constitution and the taxpayer be damned.
Republican lawmakers said the governor not only overstepped his authority, he violated the constitution’s separation of powers.