A Dane County judge has delayed a decision on whether a legal challenge to Wisconsin’s Voter ID law can proceed. The lawsuit brought by the League of Women Voters argues the legislation approved last year, which requires voters to show a government issued photo identification card to obtain a ballot, is unconstitutional.
The state wants the case dismissed, with attorney Clayton Kawski arguing in court Thursday that the League does not have the standing to file a lawsuit. Kawski pointed to lawsuits brought by other groups with plaintiffs that claim the law will keep them from voting because they do not have an ID, while the main plaintiff in the League lawsuit has made no such claim.
League attorney Susan Crawford says that doesn’t matter though, because their case centers on a claim that the Legislature exceeded its authority when it created a new class of people who are restricted from casting a ballot. The lawsuit argues the state Constitution says only felons or the mentally ill can be prevented from voting, while the Voter ID law adds individuals without a government approved ID card to that category.
Dane County Judge Richard Niess on Thursday delayed a decision on the motion to dismiss, saying his ruling would come when he hears arguments on the case in March.
The move would put a decision after February 21st, the first statewide election that will be held under the photo ID requirement. Crawford says they may consider filing a motion to block implementation of the law before the spring primary takes place.
AUDIO: Andrew Beckett reports (1:13)