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Evers, who lacks integrity, will veto election integrity bills

By M.D. Kittle

MADISON — The Republican-led Legislature has passed a spate of election integrity bills this session. But Gov. Tony Evers will veto them because he’s a partisan Democrat who lacks integrity.

Many of the bills aim to clean up the mess the troubled Wisconsin Elections Commission has made over the past few years. A state audit released late last year pointed to multiple occasions in which the elections regulator mislead, manipulated or broke election law.

Following passage of the measures last week, Evers said,  “Any bill that makes it more difficult to vote I will veto.”

What he meant was, Any bill that makes it more difficult to cheat he will veto.

He killed several voter integrity bills last year.

The left has enjoyed the fruits of the erosion of election integrity laws over the run of the pandemic, particularly in key areas such as voter ID and ballot chain of custody. And Democrats clearly benefitted from a flood of cash from liberal activist groups funded by Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg — money ostensibly for election administration that was used for GOTV campaigns targeting Dem voters.

Senate Bill 935, clarifies the role of special voting deputies. It was crafted after WEC broke election law in issuing guidance suspending SVDs from nursing homes during the pandemic. A criminal investigation found nursing home staff instead forced or manipulated severely cognitively disabled nursing home residents to vote in the 2020 presidential election.

Other reforms are designed to bring ballot security to the sweeping expansion of vote-by-mail over the last couple of years, including a bill prohibiting the misuse of the “indefinitely confined” status. The status, used by tens of thousands more voters during the COVID outbreak, loosens the state’s voter ID requirements. WEC would also be required to report election-related complaints to the Legislature for review.

In many ways, the legislation seeks to rein in an election agency that has operated outside of the law in pushing its own agenda. WEC is facing numerous lawsuits. 

Another election integrity measure checks the growing movement in liberal quarters to allow illegal immigrants to vote in local elections. A resolution authored by Assembly Majority Leader Jim Steineke (R-Kaukauna) clarifies that only U.S. citizens are eligible to vote in Wisconsin elections. The proposed constitutional amendment has to pass two consecutive sessions of the Legislature.

“Voting is one of our most important and fundamental rights,” Steineke said. “Wisconsin needs to ensure its state laws are being followed and its voters’ voices are being heard.”

Another bill would prevent governments from accepting private funds to administer elections. An Empower Wisconsin special investigation detailed the infiltration of the hotly contested 2020 presidential election by the Center of Tech and Civic Life. The Chicago-based group and its network of liberal activists used hundreds of millions of dollars from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to gain access to local voting operations and target liberal voters. Wisconsin’s five largest cities, Democrat strongholds, signed contracts with CTCL illegally binding them to the terms, according to lawsuits.

The latest complaint accuses the mayor and former city clerk of Kenosha, one of the so-called “Wisconsin-5” cities, of violating state election law prohibiting bribery. Kenosha received north of $860,000 in CTCL election grants.

“These contracts bound the municipal officials to quid pro quo reciprocal duties, including ‘clawback’ provisions requiring repayment of the grant monies to the Center for Tech and Civic Life if the organization disagreed with how the cities spent the money and conducted their 2020 elections,” said Erick Kaardal, Special Counsel for theThomas More Society, which filed the complaint with WEC on behalf of Kenosha citizens.

The election integrity package also tightens laws on voter IDs for absentee ballots and eliminates ballot harvesting by better securing the process of delivering absentee ballots.

Democrats and their allies in the mainstream media have attempted to downplay the bills, painting them as a way to “mollify backers of former President Donald Trump who falsely believe the 2020 election was stolen from him.” Such assertions reflexively dismiss legitimate and real concerns about questionable and outright unlawful practices in the 2020 election. Many voters have lost faith in elections, not because of Trump but what they witnessed in a chaotic election year.

“Restoring confidence and transparency in Wisconsin’s electoral process has been a top priority for the State Legislature,” said Rep. Rick Gundrum (R-Slinger) author of one of the key reform bills. “If we do not do more to secure our elections, then Wisconsinites will continue to lose faith in the election process.”

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2 thoughts on “Evers, who lacks integrity, will veto election integrity bills

  • Why would Evers want the rolls cleaned up. With clean and up to date voter rolls how could the dem’s cheat? I hope and pray that the republicans can help conduct a clean election. The law-abiding citizens of WI demand it.

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