Tue. Jul 23rd, 2024

Wisconsin Supreme Court overturns ruling that barred most ballot drop boxes

By 37ci3 Jul5,2024



Wisconsin Supreme Court on Friday He managed 4-3 Restore the use of the most ballot boxes on the battlefield a decision he made less than two years ago banned the use of most of these boxes.

“Our decision today does not compel or require any municipal official to use drop boxes,” Friday’s ruling said. “It simply recognizes that . . . secretaries may lawfully use safe boxes to exercise their statutory discretion.”

The ruling was highly anticipated after the court’s liberal justices announced their position on the issue. during oral arguments in the case in Mayit is likely to have major consequences in the 2024 presidential election in a crucial battleground, as it effectively allows for the widespread use of ballot boxes.

In 2020, at the height of the Covid-19 pandemic, Democrats widely encouraged voters to use drop-off boxes and are expected to do so again this fall.

On the other hand, many Republicans continued their false claims their use is linked to widespread voter fraud. But some are waiting for the verdict Republicans are now in the state to encourage voters to use the ballot box this fall.

Friday’s decision marks the latest chapter in the ever-changing saga of the primary swing state.

The Wisconsin Elections Commission, which oversees elections in the state, has approved funding for expanded use of drop boxes in 2020 during the Covid-19 pandemic.

But in a lawsuit filed by conservative groups, the state Supreme Court He decided in July 2022 Voters casting ballots outside of Wisconsin will no longer be able to drop them off in drop boxes located anywhere other than election officials’ offices. It ruled that only the GOP-controlled state Legislature — not the Wisconsin Election Commission — has the authority to enact laws and policies related to ballot boxes.

After the liberals regained their judicial majority in 2023, the Democratic group Priorities USA publicly filed a lawsuit to overturn the ruling limiting the use of drop-off boxes for 2022, as well as other rules and restrictions on absentee voting. (After the Wisconsin trial narrowed lawsuit, the group went straight to the state Supreme Court, bypassing lower appellate courts.)

The group argued that the 2022 decision was wrongly decided because Wisconsin law was silent on the issue of drop boxes. While the group acknowledged that Wisconsin law makes it clear that absentee ballots must be returned by mail or in person, they questioned whether voters could return absentee ballots in person at locations other than the clerk’s office.

The four liberal Wisconsin Supreme Court justices voted to take the case in March, agreeing only to rule that the 22-month-old ruling was a mistrial, but not any other issues raised in the lawsuit.

Democrats and progressives in the state have filed multiple briefs urging the court to overturn the 2022 ruling, while conservative groups and the Wisconsin Republican Party have filed several briefs supporting the preservation of the current regulations on drop-off boxes.

However, Friday’s ruling could accelerate Republican efforts to pass drop-off boxes in Wisconsin.

In the years since the 2020 election, the use of ballot drop boxes has been repeatedly criticized by former President Donald Trump and his representatives. alliesWHO falsely alleged that the practice led to widespread voter fraud in 2020.

But in recent months, one ongoing queue has emerged within the GOP nationally, including by Trump himself, regarding early and alternative voting methods. softens his position.

NBC News reported in May that the Wisconsin GOP would make the effort encourage voters to use the boxes if the state Supreme Court rules to reinstate them in this year’s presidential election — even though they have strongly criticized the voting method in the past — it would also make plans accommodate volunteers control drop boxes in heavily democratic areas.

Friday’s verdict was not entirely unexpected.

The four liberal justices on the Wisconsin Supreme Court repeatedly signaled during oral arguments in May that they felt the court got the issue wrong 22 months ago, with many noting that state law is silent on the specific issue. The liberal justices on the bench used their time to dismiss conservative claims that the use of such boxes was a source of fraud in previous elections. (There is no evidence of fraud or malfeasance in Wisconsin’s 2020 election.)

Meanwhile, conservatives in the state criticized the court’s retrial of the case immediately after the ruling, arguing that the “view order” doctrine — a judicial concept that judges must broadly respect legal precedents when forming and writing opinions — should be relied upon.

But the court’s liberal justices flatly rejected those claims during oral arguments, particularly the U.S. Supreme Court’s 2022 Roe v. It signaled a landmark decision to overturn Wade.

“‘Roe was very wrong from the start. Its reasoning was extremely weak, and the decision had harmful consequences,'” Karofsky read. A line from the US Supreme Court opinion.

“If we believe that Teigen was seriously wrong from the start, that his reasoning was extremely weak, and that the decision had harmful consequences, here’s what we should do,” he said. The title of the 2022 case decided by the Wisconsin Supreme Court is Teigen v. Wisconsin Commission on Elections.

Karofsky was one of three liberal justices on the Wisconsin Supreme Court in 2022 who dissented in a preliminary ruling.

Janet Protasiewicz, In 2023, he handed the victory to liberals in the Wisconsin Supreme Court race The first majority in 15 years, Friday’s majority decision was joined by three.



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