State election officials are urging patience, as they sort through recent federal court rulings on Wisconsin voting laws.
A federal judge on Friday struck down several changes Republicans have made to state election laws in recent years, which included restrictions on early voting hours and locations. In a separate case, a federal judge in Milwaukee last month ordered the state to make it easier for those without a photo ID to obtain a ballot. The state Department of Justice plans to appeal both rulings, but it’s possible they will be in effect for the November elections if neither decision is stayed.
Wisconsin Elections Commission spokesman Reid Magney says staff is working to address those changes, and hopes to provide guidance to local clerks in the coming days. “We are consulting with the Department of Justice, we are making plans…and we hope to be communicating with clerks and voters in the days and weeks after the primary about what changes are coming.”
None of the judge’s orders will impact next Tuesday’s primary election for several congressional, legislative, and district attorney races. Magney says they are trying to use caution right now, so they don’t confuse voters before then. “We need to be making preparations. However, nothing applies to next Tuesday and we don’t want to confuse things.”