Republican legislators are still trying to restrict voting, and voters across Wisconsin should tell them to stop. GOP bills would revamp the state’s misguided voter ID law — for the worse — and restrict access to early voting. These measures are more about politics than policy, more about power than the common good. The voter ID bill would allow citizens to vote if they don’t have a photo identification as long as they sign affidavits stating they are poor and couldn’t get an ID without paying for one, had a religious objection to being photographed or could not get the documentation they needed to get an ID. The ballots would be marked and could be thrown out later in a challenge. The bill is the Republican answer to complaints and lawsuits challenging the original bill requiring a photo ID.
But as we wrote last week, the current law doesn’t need an adjustment; it needs to be repealed. There is no evidence that people are running around Wisconsin impersonating other people at the polls — the sort of fraud this law is designed to curtail. It’s simply not a problem.
What is a problem? Legislators playing politics with elections — one side trying to suppress the vote of another. That’s a problem.
Wisconsin doesn’t need different standards at the polls for different voters. This “tweak” will likely discourage voting (who wants to acknowledge they are poor to a poll worker?) And that’s the last thing a Legislature ought to be doing.