Wisconsin Elections Commission Administrator Meagan Wolfe said one of her biggest worries heading into the 2020 elections will be organized efforts to confuse or mislead voters.
“We just need to be really cognizant of where we are getting our information from, and making sure we’re getting it from a legitimate source,” she told “UpFront,” produced in partnership with WisPolitics.com.
Wolfe said her agency will be working with local elections clerks to make sure they are using updated platforms and technology. The commission recently ran a test that showed a few clerks either have outdated software or hardware. The commission will be purchasing some new computers, so if clerks end up “in a position of need, we’ll be able to step in and help them out,” Wolfe said.
Wolfe also recently attended a hacking conference in Las Vegas.
She said the annual DefCon conference has been looking at voting and election technology in recent years. Wolfe said she found it “really encouraging” that there are “a lot of people out there that really want to help secure democracy and elections, not just in Wisconsin but across the country.”
Wolfe said the conference offered an opportunity to network and connect with “smart people” who can help the state strengthen its election systems.
In another segment, Josh Pade, Democratic candidate in the 1st Congressional District, said he wanted to bring his “public policy expertise and also my expertise working in the business community to Washington to make change.”
Pade recently announced he would challenge first-term Republican U.S. Rep. Bryan Steil of Janesville.
Pade ran for Wisconsin governor last year, and drew under 1 percent of the vote. However, he said his run was successful in helping build support for the overall Democratic ticket and that it helped him establish relationships and organize in the district.
He said one of his issues would be a tax cut “that works for middle-class families and not rich corporations.”
“We have such a lack of leadership in Washington,” he said. “The people in the First Congressional District are getting lost.”
Given the district’s Republican lean, host Adrienne Pedersen asked Pade what made him think a Democrat could win there.
“We’re very independent in southeastern Wisconsin, and we want to see who is the right person and who’s bringing the right ideas for this moment in time, and I think I’m that person,” Pade said.
Also on the program, Milwaukee County Supervisor Sylvia Ortiz-Velez said a public-private partnership to grow hemp seedlings in greenhouses at the Mitchell Park Domes could help pay for the Domes’ renovation.
Ortiz-Velez, whose district includes the Domes, is on the task force that recently approved a $66 million plan to renovate the Domes and add amenities to Mitchell Park. The plan is expected to come before the full Milwaukee County Board of Supervisors next month.
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