MADISON, Wis. — In announcing Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker would travel to Alabama as he continues his “stealth campaign” for the Republican nomination for the presidency in 2016, that state’s Republican party touted his “Alabama values.” One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross wondered if Walker will also share tips from Wisconsin on his efforts to manipulate the rules on voting to benefit himself politically.
Ross commented, “Jim Crow of the 1960s has nothing on Scott Walker when it comes to trying to keep legal voters from voting in free and fair elections.”
Ross noted that Gov. Walker’s anti-voter bona-fides include:
- Signing into law a voter ID requirement that would have made it harder for seniors, students and veterans to vote. The law, found unconstitutional by two state circuit court and still subject of court action, could keep up to 300,000 legal voters from casting their ballots. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 5/15/2011]
- Approving a radical gerrymandering of state legislative districts. Republicans redrew the geography of state legislative districts to protect their jobs and give themselves a partisan advantage – for example, Democrats won 174,000 more votes than Republicans in Assembly races statewide, yet it was Republicans that gained seats. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, July 11, 2011]
- Days after November elections, in which over 11% of legal voters in the state registered at the polls, Gov. Walker flew to California with an entourage including his $500,000 contributor Diane Hendricks and called for the elimination of same day voter registration in Wisconsin. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 12/7/2012]
- In 2010 when Scott Walker was in the midst of his run for Governor, billboards sprang up in minority communities in Southeastern Wisconsin declaring, “voter fraud is a felony.” Who was footing the bill for this racially-charged attempt to intimidate voters and keep them away from the polls? The Milwaukee-based Bradley Foundation, headed by Walker’s campaign co-chair Michael Grebe. [Joint Investigation by One Wisconsin Now & TheGrio.com, 10/29/2012]
“As a politician, the surest way to keep yourself from being held accountable and advancing your career is by manipulating the rules on voting to make it harder for your opponents to make their voices heard. And no one in the country is working harder at that than Scott Walker,” concluded Ross.
In addition to the anti-voter actions already taken by Walker, Republican legislative majorities in Wisconsin are poised to forward new attacks on voting rights to the Governor in the upcoming Fall legislative session, including a measure to restrict early voting and end nonpartisan “Souls to the Polls” voting drives organized by churches.
A comprehensive report on the Walker led attacks on voting in Wisconsin is available here: Protecting the Right to Vote in Wisconsin.