MADISON, Wis. — Today’s exposure that voter impropriety allegations made by a rightwing corporate front group are 100 percent false underscores the decade-long disinformation campaign by Republican officials and their allies in order to justify passage of legislation that could likely suppress the right to vote for tens of thousands of eligible Wisconsin voters.
“How many times can Republican claims about widespread voter impropriety be shown as phony?” asked Scot Ross, One Wisconsin Now Executive Director. “Gov. Scott Walker and his allies have enacted new laws to keep people from voting and it’s long past time their undemocratic scheme is called out for the voter suppression scheme it is.”
The latest episode involves Media Trackers, an organization concocted by the Purcellville, Virginia corporate front group, American Majority. Fresh off of falsely-claiming two African American women who legally signed recall petitions in Milwaukee were ineligible, Media Trackers repeatedly has accused Sen. Lena Taylor and her mother of being potentially “accessories to voter fraud.” A report in today’s Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, however, showed the voter targeted by Media Trackers’ smear campaign was an eligible voter. [Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, 12/5/11; MediaTrackers.com, 12/2/11]
Republicans and their allies have long alleged rampant voter impropriety as the basis for passing the nation’s most restrictive voter suppression/identification bill. One Wisconsin Now has pointed out that after a three-year investigation by Republican Attorney General JB Van Hollen, less than two dozen potential improper votes out of 3 million cast in the November 2008 election have been shown. The handful of those were mostly felons who have served their sentences, but were still on parole.
“From these baseless allegations of fraud to the thwarted voter caging effort in 2010 One Wisconsin Now exposed, the efforts to suppress the vote by Republicans are widespread and troubling,” said Ross. “As long as the Republicans can have their smears and lies about eligible voters continue unchecked, the integrity of our elections will remain under assault.”
One Wisconsin Now’s analysis on the lack of infrastructure to legally process the Voter Suppression/ID law is available here: http://www.onewisconsinnow.org/press/diverse-voices-register-opposition-to-unneeded-voter-identification-bill.html.
Information uncovered by One Wisconsin Now about the voter caging effort in 2010 between the Republican Party of Wisconsin, the Americans for Prosperity and the leading tea party groups is available at: www.SaveWisconsinsVote2010.com.