Wisconsin Says ‘No Way to Ending Same Day’

15,000 Signatures on Petition Opposing Gov. Walker's Effort to Eliminate Same Day Voter Registration in Wisconsin

MADISON, Wis. — A coalition of advocacy groups delivered nearly 15,000 signatures on a petition to save same day voter registration to the office of Gov. Scott Walker today, rallying to save a state law that has helped over one million eligible voters cast a ballot in November general elections in 2006, 2008 and 2010 in Wisconsin. In a recent speech in California, Gov. Walker advocated repealing same day voter registration and, in the 2011 legislative session, the first bill announced by was a repeal of same day voter registration, authored by the husband of Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch.

“Governor Walker’s latest scheme to disenfranchise Wisconsin voters by eliminating same-day registration under the veil of making it ‘easier’ on our clerks reeks of more political games” said Kristen Crowell, We Are Wisconsin Executive Director.

“Time and time again, Governor Walker and Wisconsin Republicans have attempted to use roadblocks like voter ID and doing away with same-day registration for political gain. By changing the rules, students and people who move frequently, often the poorest members of our communities, would face an unnecessary burden when trying to cast their ballot. The fact that Governor Walker would even think about dismantling our state’s fine tradition of accessible elections speaks volumes as to his ultimate goal,” continued Crowell.

Final numbers are not yet available for the November 2012 election but, according to statistics from the state Government Accountability Board, over one million Wisconsin voters registered to cast their ballot on Election Day in the November general elections in 2006, 2008 and 2010, including over 460,000 alone in the 2008 presidential election. In these same elections, the rate of voter participation in Wisconsin was among the highest in the nation.

One Wisconsin Now Executive Director Scot Ross commented, “There is no good reason to eliminate same day registration in Wisconsin, it helps legal voters to vote and it is supported by local election administrators. The politicians trying to eliminate same day voter registration are seeking to change the rules to gain partisan political advantage, and that is the true election fraud occurring in Wisconsin today.”

After extensive investigation, fewer than two-dozen instances of improper voting have been charged in Wisconsin since 2005, in which time nearly 14 million votes were cast. In addition the head of the state municipal clerk’s association has publicly endorsed continuing to allow same day voter registration.

Lisa Subek, United Wisconsin Executive Director concluded, “After two court judges shot down his repressive Voter ID law as unconstitutional, the Governor is now attempting a new scheme to suppress the vote of students, the elderly, and low-income and minority Wisconsinites by taking away same-day registration. This latest move by the Governor amounts to nothing short of political gamesmanship. Today the people of Wisconsin are standing up to this attack on our values and calling on Scott Walker to end his war on voting.”

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One Wisconsin Now is a statewide communications network specializing in effective earned media and online organizing to advance progressive leadership and values.