MADISON — Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.
The F-You closing lines to The Who’s iconoclastic rock anthem, “Won’t Get Fooled Again,” perfectly sum up the Wisconsin Elections Commission.
WEC has been defiantly breaking election law since it replaced its corrupt and inept predecessor, the Government Accountability Board.
A recent state audit confirmed what we knew about the elections regulator: It has routinely ignored or defied laws it doesn’t like. From its “guidance” on curing absentee ballots to its refusal to clean up the state’s outdated voter rolls, this ostensibly split partisan commission (made up of three Republicans and three Democrats) has proved a rubber stamp for liberal voting causes and a foil to election integrity.
A Racine County Sheriff’s Department investigation alleging WEC “shattered” election law followed on the heels of the audit. The probe found severely cognitively impaired nursing home residents voted by absentee ballots with the “help” of nursing home staff. WEC opened the door to the abuse, the investigation asserts, when the commission broke the law in barring Special Voting Deputies from assisting voters in nursing homes and residential care facilities.
There were high hopes that the Elections Commission would actually follow the law after it was created in the wake of the state Government Accountability scandal. The former GAB, the elections and campaign finance regulator, was disbanded after a history of massaging and manipulating laws into First Amendment-devouring rules and regulations. It also notoriously directed the abusive, politically motivated John Doe investigations into dozens of conservative groups. GAB’s star chamber was found unconstitutional and ordered shut down by the Wisconsin Supreme Court.
Perhaps it should come as no surprise that WEC has so frequently failed the basic tenets of free and fair elections. Many of the same liberal bureaucrats and staffers that ran the spit show at GAB came over to the Elections Commission. Two of the Republican commissioners often vote with the radical liberals on election policy.
It’s just the GAB in another suit. Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.
A lot of people in this state hope we won’t get fooled again, some of them Republican lawmakers. They say it’s time to do away with WEC, the tool of the left — which also happens to be Empower Wisconsin’s Tool of the Week.