Political News

What's the matter with Wisconsin?

Posted April 6, 2020 6:54 p.m. EDT

— Here's what we know: Wisconsin is holding a presidential primary tomorrow.

That's it.

While most states that were slated to vote in April have either postponed their primaries until later in the year or made the vote mail-in ballots only, Wisconsin has been caught betwixt and between for weeks now.

Wisconsin Democratic Gov. Tony Evers and the Republican-controlled state legislature have gone back-and-forth in search of a workable solution basically nonstop for the last week -- to no avail.

(Worth noting: Evers issued a stay-at-home order on March 25.)

With the primary just hours away, Evers issued an executive order outlawing in-person voting on Tuesday, moving in-person voting to June 9 -- even though lots and lots of people who cast absentee ballots will have voted by tomorrow.

To which the Republican leaders in the state Assembly and state Senate said this:

"We are immediately challenging this executive order in the Wisconsin State Supreme Court. The clerks of this state should stand ready to proceed with the election. The governor's executive order is clearly an unconstitutional overreach. This is another last-minute flip-flop from the governor on the April 7th election."

And on Monday evening, the state Supreme Court blocked Evers' order, which means that in-person voting is back on.

No matter what happens, legally speaking, between now and tomorrow, the end result will assuredly be lots and lots of confusion for Wisconsin voters.

And that's a massive governmental failure that should be laid directly at the feet of both Evers and the GOP leaders in the state legislature.

The Point: Yes, the coronavirus pandemic has created difficult choices for state and local government. No, this political wrangling is not an acceptable outcome.

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