Two legal challenges to Wisconsin photo identification requirement for voters seem to be headed for the state’s highest court. On Wednesday, two separate appeals courts sent challenges to the law on to the state Supreme Court, which is expected to take up the issue. To do that, a majority of the seven-member court must decide to take up the cases as requested by the appeals court. Earlier this month, two Dane County judges in different cases separately ruled to block the law, which requires citizens to show a government-issued photo ID in order to vote. The Supreme Court will have little time to decide whether to bring back the law before Tuesday’s spring elections. Elections over whether to recall Gov. Scott Walker and four Republican senators could also be ordered as soon as May 8 and June 5. The League of Women Voters of Wisconsin brought one of the two lawsuits, saying that the state went too far in requiring photo ID to vote. “The League of Women Voters is confident that we have a strong case built on clear language in the Wisconsin state constitution.
The Legislature overreached by making the display of one of a shortlist of government-issued photo IDs at the polls into a qualification for voting in our state,” Melanie G. Ramey, state League president, said in a statement. State Department of Justice spokeswoman Dana Brueck said the appeals court decision to send the case to the Supreme Court is a “good step” toward restoring the law.”The Supreme Court still has time to enter an order ensuring that the Voter ID law will be followed at the April 3 election, but it needs to move quickly. We look forward to bringing the case before the court,” Brueck said.
But Kevin Kennedy, head of the Government Accountability Board, the state elections agency being sued over the law, said that it’s too late to bring the photo ID law back for Tuesday’s election. “While we understand the need to have this issue settled, as election administrators we believe it would be unfair to the voters and local election officials to have the photo ID requirements changed again so close to the election,” Kennedy said.