Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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Amid efforts by Republican lawmakers across the nation to suppress access to the polls, a Wisconsin judge ruled Thursday that absentee ballot drop boxes are not allowed by state law.

"In looking at the statutes, there is no specific authorization for drop boxes," said Waukesha County Circuit Court Judge Michael Bohren in siding with the right-wing Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty.

The ruling also means a voter cannot give their ballot to another individual, including a spouse, neighbor, or poll worker, to be returned.

Bohren additionally "said he would finalize an injunction in 10 days ordering the state Elections Commission to withdraw long-standing advice to municipal clerks around the state that says they can use absentee ballot drop boxes," according to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

An appeal is likely, with the Associated Press reporting that the "conservative-controlled Wisconsin Supreme Court is ultimately expected to rule on the legality of the widespread use of drop boxes in the battleground state."

Jeff Mandell, president and lead counsel at Law Forward—which represented Disability Rights Wisconsin, the League of Women Voters of Wisconsin, and Wisconsin Faith Voices for Justice in the case—took issue with the judge's determination and underscored the need for national legislation to protect voting rights.

"The statutes do not prohibit drop boxes. They are legal," Mandell wrote in a Twitter thread following the decision.

He said the ruling "creates new barriers for Wisconsinites to vote absentee" just ahead of the Feb. 15 primary and "in the midst of the Omicron surge of the Covid-19 pandemic."

"If it goes into effect," warned Mandell, "this ruling will prevent some people from casting their ballots."

Political scientist Don Moynihan similarly said the ruling points to a need for federal legislation to strengthen voting rights.

Referring to the drop boxes, Moynihan tweeted that the "state Legislature won't put them back because they believe it's in their interests to limit voting and they can do so because of gerrymandering. That's why federal election reforms is the only way to fix these issues."

Despite widespread public support, two pieces of proposed federal legislation to strengthen voting rights—the Freedom to Vote Act and the John R. Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act—have stalled in Congress amid GOP obstruction.

But ongoing opposition from a pair of right-wing Democrats, Sens. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona and West Virginia's Joe Manchin, to changing the rules of the filibuster has dashed hopes of passing voting rights legislation and sparked outrage from progressive lawmakers and outside groups.

"Once again, we in the House have done our job—the fate of our democracy now rests in the United States Senate," Rep. Mondaire Jones (D-N.Y.) tweeted Thursday. "Time is running out. Reform the filibuster and pass the Freedom to Vote: John R. Lewis Act."
https://www.commondreams.org/news/2022/ ... s-unlawful

Well, just another way to keep many people from voting, especially those that can't go to drop off their ballots due to infirmities or no transportation.

Even if the Voting Rights Bill passed and was signed, you can bet that a large percent of the GOPathetic State AGs would file lawsuits against the law with Texas's AG Paxton being the first and with the conservative courts we have thanks the MM, there would be a good chance the law would be thrown out.
Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.-Huxley
"We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both." ~ Louis Brandeis,

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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sikacz wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 11:31 am Widespread support isn’t widespread if only one party barely supports it. Any republicans want election reform on the federal level?
Yes they want Election reform on the Federal level. They want to reform ti to where only GOPathetic Candidates and GOPathetic ballot measures to change something are allowed to win.
Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.-Huxley
"We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both." ~ Louis Brandeis,

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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TrueTexan wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 11:48 am
sikacz wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 11:31 am Widespread support isn’t widespread if only one party barely supports it. Any republicans want election reform on the federal level?
Yes they want Election reform on the Federal level. They want to reform ti to where only GOPathetic Candidates and GOPathetic ballot measures to change something are allowed to win.
LoL. Yeah, that would be the kind of reform they want. Two parties with opposite goals. Seems there is no way to achieve compromise or move forward with a binary choice system. I’ve known that for a long time. An alternative is needed to break the stalemate.
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"Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated!" Loquacious of many. Texas Chapter Chief Cat Herder.

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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CDFingers wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 3:30 pm
YankeeTarheel wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 2:55 pm Another ReThug "judge" who has no respect for law or the Constitution, only for the benefit of the GQP.
Well, if there's not a law that states it can be done, then it's "unlawful." That's legit in some ways.

So, make a law or shut up, Wisconsin folks.

CDFingers
What if there isn't a law that says it CANNOT be done???
"The upper class: keeps all of the money, pays none of the taxes. The middle class: pays all of the taxes, does all of the work. The poor are there...just to scare the shit out of the middle class."--George Carlin

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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YankeeTarheel wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 6:15 pm
CDFingers wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 3:30 pm
YankeeTarheel wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 2:55 pm Another ReThug "judge" who has no respect for law or the Constitution, only for the benefit of the GQP.
Well, if there's not a law that states it can be done, then it's "unlawful." That's legit in some ways.

So, make a law or shut up, Wisconsin folks.

CDFingers
What if there isn't a law that says it CANNOT be done???
Then apparently some judge gets to say it's not lawful. I think it's chicken shit. Because conservatives.

CDFingers
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Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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Eris wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 9:30 pm
CDFingers wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 3:30 pm
Well, if there's not a law that states it can be done, then it's "unlawful." That's legit in some ways.
That depends. If the law authorizes the collection of ballots, but does not specify any particular method, then presumably all methods are potentially legal.
Too many Trumpist judges all the way up to SCOTUS don't give a flying fuck about legal/illegal, only if it helps Democrats they rule against it, and if it helps Republicans they rule for it. As Jean-Paul Sartre asked in "Not Exit": What if mirrors lie? IOW, what if our mirror of our laws, ie Justice and the Courts, lie.
"The upper class: keeps all of the money, pays none of the taxes. The middle class: pays all of the taxes, does all of the work. The poor are there...just to scare the shit out of the middle class."--George Carlin

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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sikacz wrote: Widespread support isn’t widespread if only one party barely supports it. Any republicans want election reform on the federal level?
Yes, but Democrats don't want to negotiate, they want it their way and they want it all NOW. Sounds a lot like the Republicans. Democrats are whipping votes because it's an election year, if the Senate wasn't evenly divided Manchin and Sinema's votes would be irrelevant.

This is the decision of one trial court judge in one state and there are two layers of appellate courts above him. Drop boxes are a nice convenience, but they came about due to the pandemic and the reduced number of polling stations. We voted before drop boxes.

Once upon a time we were very concerned about anyone but elections officials handling ballots, blank unvoted and voted ballots. Now almost anyone can collect ballots and some people are very concerned about that.
"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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highdesert wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 8:59 am
sikacz wrote: Widespread support isn’t widespread if only one party barely supports it. Any republicans want election reform on the federal level?
Yes, but Democrats don't want to negotiate, they want it their way and they want it all NOW. Sounds a lot like the Republicans. Democrats are whipping votes because it's an election year, if the Senate wasn't evenly divided Manchin and Sinema's votes would be irrelevant.

This is the decision of one trial court judge in one state and there are two layers of appellate courts above him. Drop boxes are a nice convenience, but they came about due to the pandemic and the reduced number of polling stations. We voted before drop boxes.

Once upon a time we were very concerned about anyone but elections officials handling ballots, blank unvoted and voted ballots. Now almost anyone can collect ballots and some people are very concerned about that.
The solution would be a law setting a federal standard for elections. I doubt it can happen in this environment. It probably could have been done in the past. Absolutely, the old ballot box system was the standard, but technology changed and getting people to vote should be more important than following old precedent. Before telephones, telegraphs and electronic communication information was delivered by hand, by horse and that was also tradition. We did make the leap to allow other means of transporting information regarding our votes. I don’t think it’s a far leap to get some type of acceptable standard with safeguards to ensure voting is fair.

Side note, not all employers make it easy for people to go vote.
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"Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated!" Loquacious of many. Texas Chapter Chief Cat Herder.

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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sikacz wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 9:27 am
highdesert wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 8:59 am
sikacz wrote: Widespread support isn’t widespread if only one party barely supports it. Any republicans want election reform on the federal level?
Yes, but Democrats don't want to negotiate, they want it their way and they want it all NOW. Sounds a lot like the Republicans. Democrats are whipping votes because it's an election year, if the Senate wasn't evenly divided Manchin and Sinema's votes would be irrelevant.

This is the decision of one trial court judge in one state and there are two layers of appellate courts above him. Drop boxes are a nice convenience, but they came about due to the pandemic and the reduced number of polling stations. We voted before drop boxes.

Once upon a time we were very concerned about anyone but elections officials handling ballots, blank unvoted and voted ballots. Now almost anyone can collect ballots and some people are very concerned about that.
The solution would be a law setting a federal standard for elections. I doubt it can happen in this environment. It probably could have been done in the past. Absolutely, the old ballot box system was the standard, but technology changed and getting people to vote should be more important than following old precedent. Before telephones, telegraphs and electronic communication information was delivered by hand, by horse and that was also tradition. We did make the leap to allow other means of transporting information regarding our votes. I don’t think it’s a far leap to get some type of acceptable standard with safeguards to ensure voting is fair.

Side note, not all employers make it easy for people to go vote.

I'm all for Democrats and Republicans negotiating a national elections bill, state election laws will still vary. Some technology I agree with, but I still don't trust voting machines because like any technology they can be tampered with, same with online voting. Foreign hackers break into federal and state government websites and corporations all the time, the perfect way for Russia, China, Iran, North Korea...to control our election system. A ransomware attack could bring down a state's voting system. I'm old fashioned, I like paper ballots. Mandate time off for voting, I also like evening and weekend voting.

The big thing is we have to educate people TO vote.
"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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highdesert wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 10:15 am
sikacz wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 9:27 am
highdesert wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 8:59 am
sikacz wrote: Widespread support isn’t widespread if only one party barely supports it. Any republicans want election reform on the federal level?
Yes, but Democrats don't want to negotiate, they want it their way and they want it all NOW. Sounds a lot like the Republicans. Democrats are whipping votes because it's an election year, if the Senate wasn't evenly divided Manchin and Sinema's votes would be irrelevant.

This is the decision of one trial court judge in one state and there are two layers of appellate courts above him. Drop boxes are a nice convenience, but they came about due to the pandemic and the reduced number of polling stations. We voted before drop boxes.

Once upon a time we were very concerned about anyone but elections officials handling ballots, blank unvoted and voted ballots. Now almost anyone can collect ballots and some people are very concerned about that.
The solution would be a law setting a federal standard for elections. I doubt it can happen in this environment. It probably could have been done in the past. Absolutely, the old ballot box system was the standard, but technology changed and getting people to vote should be more important than following old precedent. Before telephones, telegraphs and electronic communication information was delivered by hand, by horse and that was also tradition. We did make the leap to allow other means of transporting information regarding our votes. I don’t think it’s a far leap to get some type of acceptable standard with safeguards to ensure voting is fair.

Side note, not all employers make it easy for people to go vote.

I'm all for Democrats and Republicans negotiating a national elections bill, state election laws will still vary. Some technology I agree with, but I still don't trust voting machines because like any technology they can be tampered with, same with online voting. Foreign hackers break into federal and state government websites and corporations all the time, the perfect way for Russia, China, Iran, North Korea...to control our election system. A ransomware attack could bring down a state's voting system. I'm old fashioned, I like paper ballots. Mandate time off for voting, I also like evening and weekend voting.

The big thing is we have to educate people TO vote.
I understand your reservations. Frankly I liked the punch cards I voted with on my first election. My case it’s nostalgia. Yes, there’s much to be worked out with new voting technologies. I’m not at all pleased with how easy it seems to be to hack and hold information ransom. I’m not particularly a proponent of any one solution, just that a consistent model needs to be worked out and mandate time off for voting as you noted. I would also like to see a paper trail, a copy to the voter and one in whatever mechanism is used. Voting should be stressed already in school, earlier the better.
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"Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated!" Loquacious of many. Texas Chapter Chief Cat Herder.

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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papajim2jordan wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 10:49 pm If I can bank online securely, why can I not vote that way? It is impressive however that we landed on the Moon while still living in the Dark Ages.
Well, in fact you *can't* bank online securely. That's the dirty little secret the banks don't want you to know. Online security is merely "good enough", but there are millions of people each year whose data gets breached.
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Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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Eris wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 10:53 am
papajim2jordan wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 10:49 pm If I can bank online securely, why can I not vote that way? It is impressive however that we landed on the Moon while still living in the Dark Ages.
Well, in fact you *can't* bank online securely. That's the dirty little secret the banks don't want you to know. Online security is merely "good enough", but there are millions of people each year whose data gets breached.
I won’t do banking online just for that reason. I do buy online with a credit card, that’s a big enough risk for me.
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"Resistance is futile. You will be assimilated!" Loquacious of many. Texas Chapter Chief Cat Herder.

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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I Like the system we use here in Denton. You go to the poll and show you ID or voter registration card.They look you up in the computer and then print you a ballot. From there you go to a little booth and mark the ballot for you choices by coloring in the little boxes with a black sharpie. You then take the ballot to a scaling machine and it reads it for your votes and any errors. stores the ballot and you are done. Very similar to a scantron test system. you hav the paper ballot as a backup for a recount. and it is a system tat is hard to hack as the results aren't transmitted til the polls close. and what is on the onsite computer can be compared to what the master system shows.
Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.-Huxley
"We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both." ~ Louis Brandeis,

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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CDFingers wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 9:32 am
papajim2jordan wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 10:49 pm If I can bank online securely, why can I not vote that way? It is impressive however that we landed on the Moon while still living in the Dark Ages.
See, that's it right there, but Repubs know that if everyone votes, Repubs will win way fewer elections.

CDFingers
Only if every vote is counted...that's their backup plan--when they don't like the result have a totally partisan "oversight" committee rule the county/district/whatever as "corrupted" (without evidence) and throw the votes out. Very Stalinist.
"The upper class: keeps all of the money, pays none of the taxes. The middle class: pays all of the taxes, does all of the work. The poor are there...just to scare the shit out of the middle class."--George Carlin

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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Eris wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 10:53 am
papajim2jordan wrote: Sat Jan 15, 2022 10:49 pm If I can bank online securely, why can I not vote that way? It is impressive however that we landed on the Moon while still living in the Dark Ages.
Well, in fact you *can't* bank online securely. That's the dirty little secret the banks don't want you to know. Online security is merely "good enough", but there are millions of people each year whose data gets breached.
I agree Eris. I've had data breached by banks, by a medical center and by my mobile phone provider. I don't do any banking online.
"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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TrueTexan wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 11:29 am I Like the system we use here in Denton. You go to the poll and show you ID or voter registration card. They look you up in the computer and then print you a ballot. From there you go to a little booth and mark the ballot for you choices by coloring in the little boxes with a black sharpie. You then take the ballot to a scaling machine and it reads it for your votes and any errors. stores the ballot and you are done. Very similar to a scantron test system. you have the paper ballot as a backup for a recount. and it is a system tat is hard to hack as the results aren't transmitted til the polls close. and what is on the onsite computer can be compared to what the master system shows.

CA doesn't require ID to vote. I walk up to a clerk and state my city/town, street address and give my full name. They find it and I sign the paper voter register and I'm given a ballot. I take the paper ballot to a station and fill in boxes and fold it up and place it in an envelope. I sign and date the outside of the envelope and seal it. I then drop it in the Ballot Box. If I vote at the Registrar of Voters/elections office, I complete a form and they print up a ballot for my precinct, after that it's the same procedure as above.

Even though ID isn't require, I do give them my drivers license for my info.

I like your state system.
"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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highdesert wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 1:04 pm
TrueTexan wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 11:29 am I Like the system we use here in Denton. You go to the poll and show you ID or voter registration card. They look you up in the computer and then print you a ballot. From there you go to a little booth and mark the ballot for you choices by coloring in the little boxes with a black sharpie. You then take the ballot to a scaling machine and it reads it for your votes and any errors. stores the ballot and you are done. Very similar to a scantron test system. you have the paper ballot as a backup for a recount. and it is a system tat is hard to hack as the results aren't transmitted til the polls close. and what is on the onsite computer can be compared to what the master system shows.

CA doesn't require ID to vote. I walk up to a clerk and state my city/town, street address and give my full name. They find it and I sign the paper voter register and I'm given a ballot. I take the paper ballot to a station and fill in boxes and fold it up and place it in an envelope. I sign and date the outside of the envelope and seal it. I then drop it in the Ballot Box. If I vote at the Registrar of Voters/elections office, I complete a form and they print up a ballot for my precinct, after that it's the same procedure as above.

Even though ID isn't require, I do give them my drivers license for my info.

I like your state system.
It isn't the state system it is the county system. Each county select how they run the elections. It should be a statewide system but consider that would be a system setup and run by the current officeholders, the three stooges and the legislature. As has been said before, "We only let our legislature meet every other year, because nothing is safe or scared when the legislature is in session." We can add in the current Governor and AG.
Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.-Huxley
"We can have democracy in this country, or we can have great wealth concentrated in the hands of a few, but we can't have both." ~ Louis Brandeis,

Re: Wisconsin Judge Rules Ballot Drop Boxes Unlawful

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TrueTexan wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 1:42 pm
highdesert wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 1:04 pm
TrueTexan wrote: Sun Jan 16, 2022 11:29 am I Like the system we use here in Denton. You go to the poll and show you ID or voter registration card. They look you up in the computer and then print you a ballot. From there you go to a little booth and mark the ballot for you choices by coloring in the little boxes with a black sharpie. You then take the ballot to a scaling machine and it reads it for your votes and any errors. stores the ballot and you are done. Very similar to a scantron test system. you have the paper ballot as a backup for a recount. and it is a system tat is hard to hack as the results aren't transmitted til the polls close. and what is on the onsite computer can be compared to what the master system shows.

CA doesn't require ID to vote. I walk up to a clerk and state my city/town, street address and give my full name. They find it and I sign the paper voter register and I'm given a ballot. I take the paper ballot to a station and fill in boxes and fold it up and place it in an envelope. I sign and date the outside of the envelope and seal it. I then drop it in the Ballot Box. If I vote at the Registrar of Voters/elections office, I complete a form and they print up a ballot for my precinct, after that it's the same procedure as above.

Even though ID isn't require, I do give them my drivers license for my info.

I like your state system.
It isn't the state system it is the county system. Each county select how they run the elections. It should be a statewide system but consider that would be a system setup and run by the current officeholders, the three stooges and the legislature. As has been said before, "We only let our legislature meet every other year, because nothing is safe or scared when the legislature is in session." We can add in the current Governor and AG.

In CA it's state law that governs elections that are administered by the counties. CA is a code state and all laws relating to elections are in the Elections Code, like there is a Penal Code, a Motor Vehicle Code.... The secretary of state then writes regulations for counties and counties write their own procedures - based on state and federal law.

Texas is smart, CA's legislature is in session year after year, which leads them to pass laws on everything. They personally don't like something, so they write a law. And CA's stooge Newsom, signs them all.
"Everyone is entitled to their own opinion, but not their own facts." - Daniel Patrick Moynihan

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