Aug 10, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Wisconsin governor vetoes GOP bills restricting absentee ballots

Picture of Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers. Photo: Melina Mara - Pool/Getty Images)

Wisconsin's Democratic Gov. Tony Evers on Tuesday vetoed several bills passed by the Republican-controlled state legislature that would impose new restrictions on absentee ballots.

Driving the news: The bills seek to prevent election workers from filling in missing information on absentee ballots — making it punishable by up to a $10,000 fine and three years in prison — and require disabled and older voters to show ID to be able to vote via absentee ballot.

  • They would have also made it a felony for nursing home or other case facility employees to help residents apply for an absentee ballot.
  • One of the bills would have required voters to fill out more paperwork and show ID whenever they vote absentee.
  • The bills would have also made it illegal to collect voter ballots earlier than two weeks prior to the election.

Between the lines: State Republicans don't have the necessary votes to override the veto, AP reports.

The big picture: President Biden narrowly defeated former President Trump in Wisconsin during the 2020 presidential election.

  • While a series of court rulings have confirmed Biden's win, Republicans have launched reviews of the 2020 election results, per AP.

What he's saying: "Across the country, the right to vote is under attack. But here in Wisconsin, I’m making sure we keep elections fair, secure, and accessible by vetoing a series of GOP bills that attack the heart of our democratic process," Evers said.

  • "Wisconsin Republicans are determined to take away the right to vote and tilt the scales in their favor," he added.
  • "Make no mistake, these bills disproportionately impact communities of color, senior citizens, and those living with disabilities. Politicians should focus on making voting more accessible for everyone, not add barriers to decrease participation."
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