WI Special Counsel’s partisan election review not yet complete / Public News Service

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The head of a partisan investigation into the November 2020 election in Wisconsin has said lawmakers should consider decertifying the results of the state’s presidential election.

Former Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman released an interim report on Tuesday and said he intended to continue the investigation, which has been extended twice.

The review has been criticized by some Republicans, Democrats and voting rights groups, who have argued that it undermines the state’s electoral process. Speaking before a legislative committee, Gableman said the inquiry was an effort to ensure the election was conducted fairly.

“When I started this process, when I started this whole procedure, I had no other goal in mind than to find the truth,” he said, “and even if we don’t haven’t fully yet, we’re getting there.”

Despite Gableman’s testimony, his report noted that his goal “is not to challenge certification of the presidential election”, although he does indicate how that could be done. According to Associated Press reports, nonpartisan legislative attorneys said the nullification of those results was illegal and that Republican legislative leaders opposed it.

Among other things, the investigation alleges that private voter grants to Wisconsin’s largest cities were illegal, that the state mismanaged nursing home voting, and that mail-in ballot boxes violate the law of the state. Gableman also called for disbanding Wisconsin’s bipartisan Elections Commission, which has been a major political focus for some Republican lawmakers in recent months.

“The Wisconsin Elections Commission – sadly, at best – is hopelessly incompetent,” he said.

Several bills closely mirroring the report’s recommendations passed the Legislative Assembly last month, but Gov. Tony Evers is almost certain to veto them. Evers’ GOP challengers in this year’s gubernatorial race have made election administration a cornerstone of their platforms and would likely be more receptive to the proposals if they were reintroduced.

Support for this report was provided by the Carnegie Corporation of New York.

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