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Wisconsin Voter ID Law Still Troubling Even Though Legal

March 23, 2015

At the end of the day when all the partisan rhetoric has ebbed away, and the rancor of legal maneuvers are completed, and all minds can calmly reflect about the Wisconsin voter ID law one central truth will remain.

The entire episode in our state involved searching for a solution to a non-existent problem.

There is no more of an honest way to state the truth.

Whatever political stripe we label ourselves at the end of the day, in that quiet space which is all our own, there is just no way to justify the law.  That is so simply because there was no need for the law.

I certainly had hoped the U.S. Supreme Court might find reason to hear the complaint about the law, but that is not to be.   The court Monday turned away a challenge to the law after having blocked the state from requiring photo IDs in last November’s general election.

So the legal journey seems to be over on this matter.

Anyone who has followed the debate here or around the nation when it comes to voter identification laws know this has far more to do with partisan moves by Republicans who seek a solution in search of a problem. There was no evidence of voter fraud that necessitated the draconian move of enacting a voter ID law in our state.  Instead the sole purpose of enacting  the voter ID law remains a tactic to undermine the rights of citizens, especially certain demographics from having easy access to a most basic constitutional right.

What Wisconsin Republicans can not come to grips with are the facts about voting in this state.  There is not now, nor has there ever been, a long list of offenders when it comes to election fraud in the Badger State.

No Republican was able to stand up in the legislature and produce any court cases, judge’s rulings, or names of those who cast fraudulent votes.  If there was such rampant voting abuses why did the attorney general not intervene?

The reason is that the GOP spun voter fraud as a means to undermine Democratic voting, not due to any voter fraud problem that needed a remedy.  The lack of any court records or media reporting of such election abuses around the state underscores the lack of credibility for the Republicans with this issue.

My readers do not have to take this fact from a liberal blogger on Madison’s isthmus.  They can instead read the words direct from a federal judge.

United States District Judge Lynn Adelman wrote almost a year ago in a ruling that “The defendants could not point to a single instance of known voter impersonation occurring in Wisconsin at any time in the recent past.”

Facts seem less important at times than do the perceptions politicians and spin consultants generate.  Much like the weapons of mass destruction within Iraq so are there supposedly streams of voters pretending to be someone else, or voting twice.   If you can just not smile or laugh out loud you too can imagine the throngs of folks using fake aliases to cast a ballot or hear the newscasters speak of the elections that were wrongly decided by all these awful abuses at the voting booth.

All that is blarney, of course.

The only real way to feel at the end of the day regarding how the voter I.D. law was handled in Wisconsin is just sadness.

How did we ever allow our state to be lowered to this point?

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