MADISON, Wis. — One Wisconsin Now joined with citizens, community leaders and voter rights advocates at the State Capitol today to fight against attacks on the right to vote and support legislation to improve access to the polls. One Wisconsin Now also re-released its comprehensive report “Protecting the Right to Vote in Wisconsin” about recent Republican-led attacks in the state on the franchise.
“If we truly believe the right to vote is sacred,” said Scot Ross, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director, “then the attacks on this right by the Republican legislature under Gov. Scott Walker are profane.”
While the GOP-controlled legislature has attempted to justify new restrictions on voting by claiming widespread voting impropriety in the state, OWN’s report reveals that when asked to provide proof to back up their claims, nearly every state Republican legislator was forced to admit they had none.
Of the 65 GOP offices to which requests were made, 50 responded that they had no documents matching the request. The remaining 15 offices provided copies of various newspaper accounts reporting the fewer than two-dozen case of voting impropriety found since 2004, a widely discredited, anonymously written “report” on voting impropriety in Milwaukee and a handful of unconfirmed constituent complaints.
“Wisconsin Republicans have time and again attacked our laws and the state constitution itself in their quest for partisan political power. The real fraud in Wisconsin is being committed by the politicians who are perpetuating a baseless myth of widespread voting impropriety to justify their attempts to rig elections,” said Ross.
In the April 2013 elections, voters in the City of Milwaukee and Dane County approved referenda in support of continuing Wisconsin’s more than 30-year Election Day Registration law by a staggering 73 percent and 82 percent, respectively.
Since 2004 more than 14 millions ballots have been cast in Wisconsin and less than two-dozen people have been convicted of improperly voting with the vast majority being felons on parole who had completed their term of incarceration, yet had not had their franchise rights restored. In that same time period, 34 Wisconsinites were killed by mass shootings in six high-profile incidents.