Robin Vos

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Wisconsin: Assembly Republicans push through recall, photo ID, absentee voting measures | Associated Press

Assembly Republicans used the final regular session day of the year Thursday to push their proposals that would make it more difficult to remove public officials from office, require photo identification at the polls and limit hours of in-person absentee voting. Democrats, who opposed all the measures but didn’t have the votes to stop them, argued against the changes as an infringement on voter rights and attempt to quash Democratic supporters. Republican leaders defended the proposals, saying they would protect the integrity of the election process by allowing recalls only when those targeted have committed a serious crime, combat fraud by requiring photo identification and install a more uniform system for in-person absentee voting hours statewide. The Assembly isn’t the last stop for any of the hot-button elections issues. All would also have to pass the Republican-controlled Senate, and the change to the recall law for statewide officials would be put to a statewide vote. The soonest that could happen is 2015. The recall measure passed 53-39 with all Democrats opposed.

Full Article: Wisconsin: Assembly Republicans push through recall, photo ID, absentee voting measures - TwinCities.com.

Wisconsin: GOP leader vows to reinstate voter ID as Assembly passes elections bill | Wisconsin State Journal

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos vowed Wednesday that he will do everything possible to quickly reinstate the requirement that Wisconsin voters present a photo identification in time for the 2014 general election. “It’s my intention to get that bill through the Legislature … and be signed by the governor sometime this fall,” said Vos, R-Rochester. Vos made that promise just before the GOP-led Assembly approved a bipartisan elections-law bill that stripped a provision to resurrect voter ID. After that and other controversial elements were taken out of Assembly Bill 225 in committee Monday, Democrats signed on, and the measure passed the full Assembly on a voice vote Wednesday with a smattering of “no” votes.

Full Article: GOP leader vows to reinstate voter ID as Assembly passes elections bill : Wsj.

Wisconsin: Lawmakers negotiating to double donor limit, allow online registration | Journal Sentinel

Democrats and Republicans in the Assembly are working together on a bill that would double the amount donors can give politicians and allow voters to register online. It’s a surprise collaboration that emerged just days after Democrats reacted with outrage at a public hearing to an earlier version of the bill from Republicans. A new draft of the measure made public Friday night shows the GOP was willing to drop some elements that Democrats consider onerous to accomplish something both parties want — raising contribution limits. … The original plan to overhaul election laws, by Rep. Jeff Stone (R-Greendale), included elements that would make it harder to recall local officials, tweak the state’s stalled voter ID law and put new restrictions on when voters can cast ballots in clerks’ offices in the weeks before an election. 

Full Article: Lawmakers negotiating to double donor limit, allow online registration.

Wisconsin: Opponents criticize bill aimed at reinstating voter ID | Pioneer Press

A sweeping Republican bill designed to reinstate voter photo identification requirements in Wisconsin would force poor people to humiliate themselves at the polls and scale back absentee voting opportunities, opponents warned during a public hearing on the proposal Tuesday. Rep. Jeff Stone’s bill would make a host of changes to state election law. A key provision would allow voters to opt out of showing photo IDs at the polls if they swear before the chief inspector and sign an affidavit saying they’re poor and can’t obtain identification without paying a fee; have a religious objection to being photographed; or can’t obtain the proper documents needed to acquire photo identification. Stone, R-Greendale, told the Assembly election committee during Tuesday’s hearing that the provisions are designed to overcome a court decision nullifying voter ID requirements in Wisconsin.

Full Article: Wisconsin: Opponents criticize bill aimed at reinstating voter ID - TwinCities.com.

Wisconsin: Assembly Speaker Robin Vos wants quick action on elections bill – State elections board wants go-slow approach | Journal Sentinel

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos plans to proceed quickly with a wide-ranging election reform bill despite objections from the state elections board. “Our main message to the committee today is please slow down,” said Michael Haas, elections director for the Government Accountability Board. “The legislation addresses some significant policy areas of election and campaign finance…that would benefit from more vetting.” But Vos, a Rochester Republican, said quick passage is necessary to enact election safeguards and properly train poll workers before the next election in spring 2014. “We adjourn on June 30, so it is my intention to get a bill passed by June 30,” Vos said, referring to the end of the Assembly’s floor period. He said he is happy to discuss components of the bill in a bipartisan fashion but stressed the need for additional safeguards in election law.

Full Article: Assembly Speaker Robin Vos wants quick action on elections bill.

Wisconsin: Recount spurs voting reforms | Journal Times

Weekend absentee voting would end and voter identification requirements would return under a sweeping new election law package partially inspired by issues in Racine. The bill from Greendale Republican Rep. Jeff Stone covers a wide swath of election-related territory, including numerous procedural changes for how electoral recounts are run. Those changes are partially the product of last summer’s recall recount in Racine, where tensions ran high and allegations of election fraud repeatedly surfaced, according to Stone’s office. Speaker of the Assembly Robin Vos, R-Rochester, said his office helped shape the final bill, bringing together what he called “a bunch of different ideas regarding elections to make them hopefully easier and more fair.” The result is the wide-ranging proposal planned for committee debate Tuesday.

Full Article: Recount spurs voting reforms.

Wisconsin: Elections bill would make it harder to recall municipal and school officials | Journal Sentinel

Municipal and school officials could be recalled from office only if they have been charged with a crime or ethics violation, under a sweeping elections bill quickly moving through the state Assembly. Under other provisions of the bill by Rep. Jeff Stone (R-Greendale), new limits would be enacted on when people can vote in clerks’ offices before an election, ballots could more easily be thrown out and restrictions would be eased on when lobbyists can give campaign donations to legislators and the governor. The bill wouldn’t affect state and county elected officials, who can be recalled for any reason under the Wisconsin constitution. As a result, the proposal would not have prevented the recall election of Gov. Scott Walker last year or the attempted recall of Milwaukee County Executive Tom Ament after the pension scandal in 2002.

Full Article: Elections bill would make it harder to recall municipal and school officials.

Wisconsin: Voter ID, shorter absentee balloting proposed | Chippewa Herald

A Republican lawmaker is proposing numerous changes to the state’s voting, election and campaign finance laws, including reinstating the requirement that voters show a photo ID to cast a ballot and shortening the time for in-person absentee voting. The voter ID requirement, passed in 2011, has been tied up in the courts and currently is not in effect. Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, has repeatedly called on the Legislature to reinstate photo ID, which surveys have shown is supported by a majority of Wisconsin residents. Opponents of photo ID have argued that many voters — including the poor, elderly and disabled — are disenfranchised because they lack driver’s licenses or the ability to get photo identification. Two Dane County judges have found the provision to be an unconstitutional impairment of the right to vote. The state is appealing those rulings.

Full Article: Voter ID, shorter absentee balloting proposed.

Wisconsin: Opposition Mounts Over Plan to Scrap Same Day Voter Registration | WUWM News

Gov. Scott Walker set off a firestorm last month when he suggested Wisconsin should do away with same day registration. He says eliminating the on-site procedure would alleviate the burden on poll workers. “It’s difficult for them to handle the kind of volume of folks who come in at the last minute. It would be much better if registration was done in advance of Election Day,” Walker says. Incoming Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos supports the governor’s idea of requiring voters to register ahead of time. Vos says lines would be shorter at the polls. He also claimed in a television broadcast a few days ago, that same day registration sometimes results in fraud.

Full Article: WUWM News: Opposition Mounts Over Plan to Scrap Same Day Voter Registration.

Wisconsin: On Voter ID, GOP Leader Open To Changing Wisconsin State Constitution | Huffington Post

Requiring every Wisconsin voter to show photo ID at the polls is going to be a top priority for the Republican-controlled legislature in the next session, according to incoming Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Rochester). “I do think that having photo ID is something that is broadly supported by the public,” Vos said in an interview on Sunday with WISN’s Mike Gousha. “It’s something that I really hope we’re going to have in place by the next general election.”

Full Article: On Wisconsin Voter ID, GOP Leader Open To Changing State Constitution.

Wisconsin: Wisconsin straight-party voting abolished | GazetteXtra

Records show that 54 percent of city of Milwaukee voters—or 149,546 of them—cast straight-party ballots in the 2008 presidential election and that 53 percent of them voted that way in 2010. In both elections, city of Milwaukee voters cast six straight-party Democratic ballots for every one cast for Republicans. Straight-party voting has also been popular elsewhere: In Jefferson County, 46 percent of 2010 voters cast straight-party ballots in 2010. In La Crosse County, almost 44 percent of all votes cast in 2010 were straight-party ballots. In Rock County, straight-party ballots were 39 percent of votes cast in 2010 and 2008. But straight-party ballots—used by voters wanting to vote for all candidates of one party, unless they make exceptions for individual offices—are no longer allowed in Wisconsin. In a change that was overshadowed by the controversy over whether voters should have to show a photo ID to cast a ballot, Republican state officials banned straight-ticket voting.

Full Article: Popular straight-party voting abolished -- GazetteXtra.

Wisconsin: Wisconsin recall elections cost $13.5 million | Journal Times

Gov. Scott Walker’s June recall election and the primary held a month before it cost taxpayers more than $13 million, the board that oversees elections in Wisconsin reported Friday. The Government Accountability Board stressed that its findings were merely an estimate and not audited. The figures were reported at lawmakers’ request. State Rep. Robin Vos, a Republican critic of the recalls and the presumptive next speaker of the Assembly, said he’s “more committed than ever to recall the recalls” in Wisconsin. He called the $13.5 million price tag an “outrage.” Vos, currently co-chair of the Legislature’s budget-writing committee, said he will introduced a constitutional amendment that would only allow elected officials to be recalled if they committed a crime or malfeasance in office.

Full Article: Walker recall elections cost $13.5 million.

Wisconsin: Lawmaker’s wife casts vote in Wisconsin while Idaho resident | WKOW

he wife of a prominent state lawmaker cast a vote in Wisconsin’s April presidential primary election, even though she was a resident of Idaho at the time. Wisconsin Government Accountability Board records show Samantha Vos voted in the state’s April 3 election. Vos is the wife of Rep. Robin Vos (R-Rochester), the co-chair of the state’s powerful joint finance committee. But records from Canyon County, Idaho show Samantha Vos swore under oath April 19 she was a resident of that state since early March. Vos’ declaration came as she filed for legal separation from her husband. Wisconsin law requires twenty eight days of continuous residency prior to voting. Attempts by 27 News to reach Samantha Vos have been unsuccessful.

Full Article: Lawmaker’s wife casts vote while Idaho resident.

Wisconsin: Ryan likely to run for both House seat and VP | Human Events

From Washington D.C. to Wisconsin, betting is strong that newly-minted Republican vice presidential hopeful Paul Ryan will run on Mitt Romney’s ticket while simultaneously seeking re-election to Congress. “It is perfectly legal under state law for Paul Ryan to run for the House and vice president concurrently,” veteran Madison (Wisc.) Republican consultant Scott Becher told Human Events shortly after Ryan was formally tapped as Romney’s running mate Saturday morning. Becher noted that the Badger State will hold its primaries next Tuesday (August 14) and Ryan is already on the ballot for renomination to a seventh term as U.S. Representative from the 1st District. Ryan, who has more than $5 million in his congressional campaign committee, appeared headed for another big re-election. Since winning his first term in 1998 with 57 percent of the vote, the Janesville lawmaker has been re-elected with margins ranging from 63 to 68 percent of the vote.

Full Article: Ryan likely to run for both House seat and VP - Conservative News, Views & Books.

Wisconsin: Ryan would appear on ballot twice in Wisconsin | The Washington Post

Mitt Romney’s decision to select Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) as his vice presidential running mate raises the question of what happens in the Badger State’s 1st District, where Ryan is favored to win reelection in the fall. According to state election law, Ryan would not have to sacrifice his spot on the congressional ballot even though he is also running for vice president. He would appear on the ballot twice. Ryan would appear on the ballot as both a candidate for the House and for vice president. If the Romney-Ryan presidential ticket is not successful, but he wins his congressional race, Ryan can keep his seat. If the national ticket wins the White House and Ryan holds his House seat, a special election would be held to replace him in the House. “If the candidate is elected president or vice president of the United States such election shall void the candidate’s election to any other office. A special election shall be held to fill any office vacated under this subsection,” reads a state statute on multiple nominations.

Full Article: Ryan would appear on ballot twice in Wisconsin - The Washington Post.

Wisconsin: Lawmaker withdraws in Photo ID case | JSOnline

A state lawmaker is pulling his name from an effort to intervene in a lawsuit over the state’s photo ID law. Rep. Bob Ziegelbauer (I-Manitowoc) said he was withdrawing his name from a motion filed in the case after questions were raised about whether he was violating state ethics law by accepting legal help in making the filing. “I’m not trying to get in a big fight over a technicality,” Ziegelbauer said. “It’s more trouble than it’s worth.” Scot Ross, executive director of One Wisconsin Now, filed the complaint against Rep. Robin Vos (R-Burlington) and Ziegelbauer based on a Journal Sentinel report that the two were refusing to say who was funding their legal work.

Full Article: Lawmaker withdraws in Photo ID case - JSOnline.

Wisconsin: Vos claims that Lehman victory was achieved with "voter fraud" | The Recall Elections Blog

Republican House Rep. Robin Vos is now claiming that John Lehman’s close victory in the Wisconsin Senate recall was due to voter fraud and “illegitimate” because it was under the old district lines. Vos claimed that “Unfortunately a portion of it was fraud.” However, his factual back-up seems embarrassingly iffy for such a significant claim:

“There was no double checking to make sure that people even resided for 28 days,” he added.” I think people came in with same-day registrations and to their credit, I mean that’s just part of the get out the vote effort. But you have to have some sort of ID, in my mind; I think that was another thing that led to the potential for fraud.”