PROTECTING ELECTION INTEGRITY FROM SENATOR DEVIN LEMAHIEU
Protecting Election Integrity
Yesterday, Senator Kathy Bernier (R-Chippewa Falls) and I sent a letter to the bipartisan Wisconsin Elections Commission (WEC) urging the commission to follow state law regarding voter list maintenance. The commission is currently declining to make critical updates…
to the state’s voter rolls until after the 2020 elections.
During my first term, then Rep. Bernier and I authored 2015 WI Act 261. This law made a number of reforms to Wisconsin’s election process:
- Created the state’s first online voter registration system (accessible at myvote.wi.gov)
- Allowed veterans to use their veteran’s ID card as valid identification at the polls
- Made it easier for nursing home residents to update their voter registration information
Another key reform was having Wisconsin join the Electronic Registration Information Center (ERIC), a consortium of 29 states that confidentially share voter data to ensure accurate voter lists. ERIC generates reports to member states that show voters that have moved, are deceased, or have duplicate registrations.
This year, data from ERIC helped Wisconsin election officials identify more than 50,000 invalid addresses. Unfortunately, WEC has declined to actually remove these names from the voter rolls until after the 2020 election cycle. The commission is currently the defendant in a lawsuit seeking to force the agency to update the statewide voter list within the 30 day timeframe required by statute.
This week, the Elections Commission voted to ask the Legislature for guidance on the issue. In our letter, Senator Bernier and I urged the Commission to follow the law and update the voter rolls.