Empower Wisconsin | Dec. 17, 2019
By M.D. Kittle
MADISON — The incompetent Wisconsin Elections Commission deadlocked Monday on how to deal with a court order requiring as many as 234,000 people who have not proved their residency to be removed from the state voting rolls.
In short, the three Democrats on the six-member commission don’t want to follow the law or the court ruling demanding the state do so.
On Friday, Ozaukee County Circuit Court Judge Paul Malloy ruled that state law clearly requires the commission purge the rolls of voters who apparently have moved, and to do so within 30 days of confirmation.
A motion proposed by the commission’s three Republicans would have required the commission to purge the voter rolls seven days after Malloy issues his written ruling.
The commission earlier this year decided it had the authority to expand that timeframe to as long as two years. That means voters suspected of moving from their districts would still be in the voter database through next year’s presidential election. In battleground Wisconsin, voter integrity is a critical issue.
The Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty sued the Elections Commission, alleging it was violating the law and the intentions of the Legislature.
Liberals on the commission wanted to wait until the judge issued his written order before acting, noting Attorney General Josh Kaul, also a Democrat, would likely appeal the decision.
Commission member Mark Thomsen, a Democrat, complained that the commission has “no right” to require voters to re-register. It certainly does if a voter has relocated. Wisconsin provides for same-day voter registration, so the argument that cleaning up the voter rolls is disenfranchising voters is tenuous at best.
“I think this is a very clear motion. We’re not infringing on anyone’s constitutional rights,” said new commission member Bob Spindell, one one three Republicans on the panel and a long-time member of the Milwaukee Election Commission. “All that’s required is driver’s license. It’s a very quick process. Saying it takes away people’s rights to vote is inaccurate.”