Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Trump Tied Group Demands Wisconsin Voting Changes

Madison, Wisconsin. (AP) – A group formed to support former President Donald Trump’s agenda is working with Wisconsin Republicans on a vote that will bypass the Democratic governor of the state and change the way elections are held in the struggling state.

The effort represents a renewed escalation of the ongoing Republican campaign to change voting laws in response to Trump’s false claims of widespread 2020 election fraud. This comes as Wisconsin became the epicenter of the voting war this year, as Republicans tried to dismantle the electoral system they themselves created years ago and figure out how to do it if the Democrat governor is still in power.

Support for a possible route around Governor Tony Evers was revealed during a private election session hosted by the American Council on Legislative Exchange, which advocates conservative policies for state legislators in voting and in other areas. Former Trump White House spokesman Hogan Gidley told attendees that his new organization, the Election Integrity Center, is working with elected officials and business leaders in Wisconsin to “find a better way” around Evers, who said he would block GOP support. electoral measures.

“We feel the governor has nothing to do about it and it will become law,” Gidley said in a meeting transcript, which was made by a participant and obtained by the Associated Press.

The strategy is similar to the one already being implemented in Michigan. State Republicans are already collecting signatures to put on the ballot measures that would tighten voting laws in the state in an attempt to bypass Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s veto on a similar bill passed by the GOP-controlled state legislature. But Gidley’s announcement is the first indication that a Trump-linked group is using similar tactics in Wisconsin.

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Upon receiving comment, Gidley initially said he would provide more details on his work in Wisconsin, but did not respond to further requests for comment.

Bill McCoshen, head of the political council for the conservative group Common Sense Wisconsin, said he met with Gidley in Milwaukee six weeks ago to discuss putting the election proposal on the ballot.

“I think they thought it was a good idea,” McCoshen said. “They somehow did not undertake any obligations to us.”

McCoshan’s proposal would require elections to be held uniformly throughout Wisconsin; early voting hours and days should be the same in all communities, and some will have to change the way absentee ballots are counted. The move is largely seen as an attempt to force the state’s democratic cities to restrict access.

The proposal will also prohibit private groups from making large donations to cities in the state, where there are many Democrats.

Wisconsin Republicans were unhappy with more than $ 10 million in electoral subsidies that went to more than 200 municipalities last year, most of which went to the state’s five largest cities, all of which are Democratic strongholds. The money came from $ 350 million in campaign donations from Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg, which sparked deep conservative suspicions.

According to the amendment, such money must be divided among all municipalities in the state.

The change requires amending the state constitution, a process that takes at least two years as the Legislature must pass it in two consecutive sessions. No amendments have yet been made in the parliament building on this score.

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After Trump’s minor loss of Wisconsin last year, the state was shaken by a Republican attack on a bipartisan electoral commission set up by the GOP-controlled Legislature itself six years ago.

Gidley’s group is part of the America First Policy Institute, an organization created during the Trump administration to promote the former president and his policies.

The three-hour session in which Gidley spoke took place on Wednesday during the Conservative Council of State and National Policy Summit in San Diego, California.

The session reveals how election issues have taken center stage on the GOP agenda as Trump falsely accused his 2020 loss of fraud. Repeated checks, investigations and lawsuits, including by the Trump Department of Justice, did not reveal significant fraud in the presidential election. But that hasn’t stopped state Republican legislatures from pushing new laws that largely set new restrictions on voting.

During the meeting, attendees heard the words of Clete Mitchell, a prominent Conservative attorney who advised the former president earlier this year when he pressured Georgia Republicans to declare him the winner of the victory for President Joe Biden. The group was also approached by Arizona Senate President Karen Fann, who approved a review of elections in the state’s largest constituency, which pursued various conspiracy theories. No fraud in Biden’s victory was proved there.

Gidley praised the review in Arizona. “Arizona has done a great job with their audits,” he told the group.

Nation World News Desk
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