Photo by Saiyna Bashir, The Capital Times

An Ozaukee County judge today ruled the Wisconsin Elections Commission violated state law by changing the period for voters who may have moved to confirm their address from 30 days to up to two years.

Judge Paul Malloy sided with the conservative Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty. WILL filed a lawsuit in November arguing the move was illegal and called for any of the roughly 234,000 voters flagged as movers who did not respond to the WEC’s October mailing to be changed from active to inactive. 

Malloy this afternoon ordered the Elections Commission to comply with the 30-day limit and deactivate potential movers who don’t confirm their address within the allotted period.

“This case is about whether a state agency can ignore clearly written state law,” said WILL President and General Counsel Rick Esenberg in a statement. “Today’s court order requires the Wisconsin Elections Commission to follow state law and we look forward to making the case that they must continue to follow state law.”  

WEC previously maintained it is “confident it is complying with Wisconsin law.” And in material for its December meeting noted the language of the statute highlighted in the WILL suit applies only to “actions of municipal clerks and the City of Milwaukee Election Commission… not to the WEC.”

A WEC spokesman was not immediately available for comment.

The decision is expected to be appealed.

See details on the suit:
https://wcca.wicourts.gov/caseDetail.html?caseNo=2019CV000449&countyNo=45#records 

See the WEC materials starting on page 101:
https://elections.wi.gov/sites/elections.wi.gov/files/2019-11/Open%20Session-%20December%20Final.11.26.19.pdf 

 

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