Towns and counties wouldn’t be allowed to issue photo ID cards to their residents under a bill discussed by a Senate committee on Tuesday. Any IDs previously issued by towns or counties could not be used to vote, register to vote or obtain public benefits like food stamps or Medicaid, under the bill. Towns and counties would still be able to issue employee ID cards, cards for vendors or contractors and cards required to use services and facilities like transit systems or golf courses. Cities and villages could still issue photo IDs, but those IDs also could not be used for proof of residence or to receive public assistance. IDs issued by a city or village would be required to state clearly, “Not authorized for voting purposes.”
Those opposed to the bill say it infringes on local control and could make it harder for people to register to vote.
The bill’s sponsors, Sen. Van Wanggaard, R-Racine, and Rep. Joe Sanfelippo, R-New Berlin, say the measure is designed to prevent confusion and prevent fraud.
“This appears to be a gratuitous swipe at the city and county of Milwaukee,” said Matt Rothschild, executive director of the government watchdog group the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign.