GOP Lame Duck Session Targets Evers
Far-reaching bill would reduce governor’s power, limit early voting.
State lawmakers will vote this week on a number of Republican-backed proposals, including a plan to limit early voting in Wisconsin.
The so-called “extraordinary session,” approved by legislators on Friday and scheduled to begin Monday, is aimed at passing a number of new laws before Democratic Gov.-elect Tony Evers takes office in January.
One proposal would trim several days off Wisconsin’s early voting window — a move opponents have argued is aimed at suppressing certain voting populations, including students and minorities.
Analiese Eicher, program director for liberal group One Wisconsin Now, which has successfully sued the state over its voting laws, said she was “shocked but not surprised” GOP lawmakers introduced the plan.
“For them, losing every statewide office on the ballot on Nov. 6 was apparently what they needed to go after our right to vote again,” she said. “This was a midterm election that saw record turnout driven in large part by record early voting and now we’re seeing that they’re potentially trying to change the law to keep people from voting.”
“It’s now becoming clear how low Republicans are willing to go in this desperate lame duck session,” Assembly Minority Leader Gordon Hintz, D-Oshkosh, tweeted Friday. “Divided government should be a chance for both parties to hit reset. Sad to see this is how Republicans are choosing to start things off.”
Local election officials from across the state have also said they’re concerned about moving the election date, arguing the change would create substantial logistical difficulties.
Other proposals on the calendar for the extraordinary session have been openly discussed at the Capitol in recent weeks. Those include a move to increase lawmakers’ power over the Wisconsin Economic Development Corp., an agency that Evers has said he would like to eliminate entirely.
“WEDC, our economic development agency, must continue to have the ability to help spur job creation and business opportunities without fear of being shut down,” said Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, and state Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, in a prepared statement on Friday.
The bill up for a vote this week would increase legislative appointments to the WEDC board, thereby limiting the power of gubernatorial appointments.
Another proposal would protect the state’s voter ID law from any future changes by Evers.
“Wisconsin law, written by the legislature and signed into law by a governor, should not be erased by the potential political maneuvering of the executive branch,” Vos and Fitzgerald said in their statement.
Other bills would limit Evers’ power to change state work requirements for food stamps and eliminate his ability to authorize Wisconsin to leave a federal lawsuit against the Affordable Care Act.
Senate Minority Leader Jennifer Shilling, D-La Crosse, called the proposals “ludicrous.”
“Rather than protecting jobs, strengthening schools, and fixing our roads, Republicans want to undermine Gov.-elect Evers before he takes office,” Shilling tweeted.
Lawmakers were initially expected to reconvene after the election only to take up Gov. Scott Walker‘s proposal of tax incentives for consumer products company Kimberly-Clark Corp. The fate of that legislation remains uncertain in the state Senate.
Listen to the WPR report here.
GOP State Lawmakers Look To Limit Early Voting In Lame-Duck Session was originally published by Wisconsin Public Radio.
More about the Lame Duck Laws
- Motion to Block Early Voting Restrictions to be Filed Today - Citizen Action of Wisconsin - Dec 17th, 2018
- Carpenter: Require ‘Lame Duck” Bills to Supermajority Votes - State Sen. Tim Carpenter - Dec 17th, 2018
- Op Ed: Lame Duck Bills Too Rushed, Secretive - Erin Grunze - Dec 16th, 2018
- Walker Signs Lame Duck Bills - Laurel White - Dec 14th, 2018
- Rep. Zamarripa Statement on Lame Duck Bills - State Rep. JoCasta Zamarripa - Dec 14th, 2018
- One Wisconsin Institute Announces Coming Legal Action Against GOP ‘Lame Duck’ Voting Rights Attacks - One Wisconsin Institute - Dec 14th, 2018
- Governor Walker just sealed his legacy as the worst Governor in state history - State Sen. Chris Larson - Dec 14th, 2018
- Governor Walker Signs Extraordinary Session Legislation into Law in Green Bay - Gov. Scott Walker - Dec 14th, 2018
- Governor-elect Tony Evers Statement on Kimberly-Clark Announcement - Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers - Dec 13th, 2018
- Walker Defends Lame Duck Bills - Laurel White - Dec 12th, 2018
- Murphy’s Law: Republicans’ Plan for Permanent Power - Bruce Murphy - Dec 11th, 2018
- Lame Duck Law Adds Work For State Agencies - Rich Kremer - Dec 11th, 2018
- Lawmakers Change How WEDC Tracks Jobs - Laurel White - Dec 10th, 2018
- Op Ed: Republican Power Grab Unprecedented - State Sen. Chris Larson - Dec 10th, 2018
- The State of Politics: 5 Reasons for Republican Power Play - Steven Walters - Dec 10th, 2018
- Campaign Cash: WMC Behind New Anti-Regulation Bill - Wisconsin Democracy Campaign - Dec 7th, 2018
- Wisconsin Budget: One More Tax Cut For The Wealthy - Tamarine Cornelius - Dec 7th, 2018
- City Beat: Episode 002 - Jeramey Jannene - Dec 6th, 2018
- Lame-Duck Bill Changes Highway Funding - Rich Kremer - Dec 6th, 2018
- Murphy’s Law: What Will Scott Walker’s Legacy Be? - Bruce Murphy - Dec 6th, 2018
- Governor Walker: What Will Your Message To Gov.-Elect Evers Be? - State Sen. Tim Carpenter - Dec 6th, 2018
- WI & MI GOP Attempt to Undermine the Voice of Voters, Put Democracy and Safety at Risk - Democratic Attorneys General Association - Dec 6th, 2018
- Your Right to Know: Lame Duck Laws All About Secrecy - Dee J. Hall - Dec 5th, 2018
- Data Wonk: The Republican War Against Democracy - Bruce Thompson - Dec 5th, 2018
- Extraordinary Session Update: Legislature Approves Critical Reforms - Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty - Dec 5th, 2018
- Rep. Gwen Moore Statement on Republican Power Grab - U.S. Rep. Gwen Moore - Dec 5th, 2018
- Statement on Lame Duck Session - State Rep. Evan Goyke - Dec 5th, 2018
- Legislature Works Overnight To Curb Evers Power - Shawn Johnson and Laurel White - Dec 5th, 2018
- Governor-elect Tony Evers Statement on Extraordinary Session - Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers - Dec 5th, 2018
- Republican’s Holiday Gift to Wisconsin: An Assault on Democracy - State Sen. Janis Ringhand - Dec 5th, 2018
- Unprecedented Power Grab Will Break Wisconsin for Years to Come - State Sen. Chris Larson - Dec 5th, 2018
- Senator Taylor Believes GOP Are Taking Career Ending Votes - State Sen. Lena Taylor - Dec 4th, 2018
- Bill Curbing Evers’ Power Moves to Legislature - Shawn Johnson and Laurel White - Dec 4th, 2018
- Extraordinary Session Policy Items Flying Under the Radar - Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty - Dec 4th, 2018
- Will Republican Legislature Risk Contempt With Scheme to Enact New Limits on Early Voting? - One Wisconsin Now - Dec 4th, 2018
- Representative Lisa Subeck Statement on the Extraordinary Session - State Rep. Lisa Subeck - Dec 4th, 2018
- Power Tends to Corrupt, Absolute Power Corrupts Absolutely - State Rep. Jimmy Anderson - Dec 4th, 2018
- Governor-elect Tony Evers’ Testimony to the Joint Committee on Finance Opposing Extraordinary Session Legislation - Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers - Dec 3rd, 2018
- Eight Days After November Election Republican Assembly Leader Robin Vos Requested New Restrictions on Early Voting - One Wisconsin Now - Dec 3rd, 2018
- Op Ed: GOP Bills Change 400 Sections of State Law - State Sen. Kathleen Vinehout - Dec 3rd, 2018
- Rep. Brostoff Statement on Republican Effort to Override Will of Wisconsin Voters - State Rep. Jonathan Brostoff - Dec 3rd, 2018
- Conservation Voters issue statement on lame duck bills - Wisconsin League of Conservation Voters - Dec 3rd, 2018
- Evers Will Fight Plan to Limit His Power - Corri Hess - Dec 3rd, 2018
- GOP Lame Duck Session Targets Evers - Laurel White - Dec 3rd, 2018
- ACLU of Wisconsin’s Board of Directors condemns lame duck session - American Civil Liberties Union of Wisconsin - Dec 3rd, 2018
- Stop the Wisconsin GOP power grab - Indivisible Madison - Dec 3rd, 2018
- Election defeat leads to GOP temper tantrum - State Sen. Jennifer Shilling - Nov 30th, 2018
- Vos Republicans: ‘Too Many People Voted’ - One Wisconsin Now - Nov 30th, 2018