WILL seeks to prevent Super PAC from overturning Wisconsin election laws governing drop boxes and absentee ballot security
The News: The Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty (WILL) has filed a motion to intervene in a lawsuit seeking to overturn Wisconsin Election Law, on behalf of two Wisconsin voters and the Association of Mature American Citizens, Inc. (AMAC), a membership association with nearly 50,000 Wisconsin members.
The lawsuit was brought by Priorities USA, a Left-leaning Super PAC, and seeks to undo WILL’s recent win in the Wisconsin Supreme Court, where the Court held that absentee-ballot drop boxes are not authorized by Wisconsin law. The case also seeks to remove other important election security measures.
The Quotes: Rick Esenberg, WILL President and General Counsel, stated, “The stakes for this case could not be higher. A far-left Super PAC from outside of Wisconsin is attempting to rewrite our laws. If they don’t like the law, they need to go to the legislature. WILL has a proven track record of defending the right to vote and also the rule of law, and we plan to aggressively defend the previous ruling we secured in Teigen v. WEC.”
Luke Berg, WILL Deputy Counsel, added, “This case is yet another attempt by the left to use the courts to remove meaningful election-integrity protections. WILL stands ready to defend our election laws, uphold Wisconsin statutes, and deny out-of-state interference.”
Bob Carlstrom, WILL Client and AMAC Action President (the advocacy affiliate of AMAC), said, “On behalf of our over 2 million members nationwide and over 50,000 Wisconsin residents, we are very concerned about the efforts of the plaintiffs to dilute, weaken, and confuse Wisconsin’s current absentee voting statutes’ intent to protect and ensure the integrity of the votes cast by Wisconsin citizens. The integrity of elections is our foremost priority and we strongly oppose efforts such as the plaintiff’s as counter to the rightful interests of the individual voter for free and fair elections and correct, not manipulated, outcomes.”
What’s At Stake: Priorities USA, a Left-leaning Super PAC, is bringing constitutional challenges to various absentee-ballot requirements, seeking to use the court system to eliminate them. The case challenges the requirement for absentee ballots to be witnessed by a third party, the deadline to cure mistakes on absentee ballots, the requirement that absentee ballots be returned in-person to the clerk or via the mail (which the Wisconsin Supreme Court held, in a case brought by WILL, does not allow for drop boxes), and the statutory distinction Wis. Stat. § 6.84 draws between the right to vote at the polling place and the privilege of voting by absentee ballot (Complaint ¶¶ 27-60).
These laws protect the integrity of Wisconsin’s elections, promoting trust in the democratic process and confidence in election results. Any attempt to rewrite these laws would not only circumvent the lawmaking process in Wisconsin, but would open our state up to election fraud.
Experts in Defending Wisconsin Elections: WILL and its clients have a clear interest in defending the constitutionality of the challenged statutes. WILL has been on the forefront of critical litigation efforts to protect the vote in Wisconsin as well as creating research and analysis of the 2020 Election.
On July 8, 2022, Wisconsin Supreme Court held that absentee ballot drop boxes, used widely in the 2020 election, have no statutory authorization and Wisconsin Elections Commission (WEC) guidance encouraging their use was unlawful.
2020 Election Report:
In 2021, WILL released “A Review of the 2020 Election.” Our findings, which were praised by the Wall Street Journal as “The Best Summary of the 2020 Election,” criticized many election processes, including the widespread adoption of drop boxes and the abandonment of proper legal procedures.