Lawsuit could affect ability of 234,000 Wisconsin voters to cast ballots

Lawsuit could affect ability of 234,000 Wisconsin voters to cast ballots
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More than 230,000 voters in Wisconsin may not be able to vote in upcoming elections unless they register again if a lawsuit being filed Wednesday is successful.

The lawsuit could impact voters hoping to cast their ballots in both the state's April presidential primary and the 2020 general election, according to The Associated Press.

The conservative Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty alleges the Wisconsin Elections Commission broke the law when deciding to wait up to two years, as opposed to 30 days, to deactivate voters who may have moved out of state, the AP reported. The complaint asks for the commission's decision to be immediately revoked, which could lead to as many as 234,000 voters losing their eligibility until they can confirm their addresses or reregister, the news service added.


The lawsuit comes as both Democrats and Republicans are heavily targeting voters in Wisconsin, which is considered a swing state key to victory in 2020.

President TrumpDonald TrumpCheney challenger wins Wyoming Republican activists' straw poll We must do more to protect American Jews 6 in 10 say they would back someone other than Biden in 2024: Fox News poll MORE won the state by less than 23,000 votes over Democratic nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonNo Hillary — the 'Third Way' is the wrong way The dangerous erosion of Democratic Party foundations The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Democrats see victory in a voting rights defeat MORE in 2016.

The state commission rejected the institute's complaint last month, saying it was confident it had complied with the law, the AP noted, adding that the commission mailed notices in October to the roughly 234,000 voters it identified as potentially having moved out of state.

Voters who do not respond to the mailer asking to confirm their addresses will be flagged as having moved, according to the news service, however, they will have up to two years to confirm their addresses, based on a June vote by the commission.

Elections Commission staff said in a memo from March that it had the authority to delay removing voters from the rolls beyond 30 days because another state law gives it the ability to create rules maintaining the voter registration list, the AP noted.

The new lawsuit is asking a judge to require the commission to deactivate any of the 234,000 voters who received notice and did not respond within 30 days, according to the news service.

Liberals are reportedly concerned the move could disproportionately impact younger and lower-income voters who are more likely to vote Democratic.

The lawsuit says registering again is "no hardship" because voters can do it at the polls on Election Day, needing only a photo ID and proof of residence, the AP noted.