Barrett Says 35,000 City Voters At Risk
Mayor criticizes voter purge, pushes state officials to protect election system’s integrity.
Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett and the city’s Elections Commission criticized an effort to remove voter registrations for Wisconsin residents who are thought to have moved.
Barrett announced Friday at Milwaukee City Hall that he wants government officials to protect the integrity of the system.
The Wisconsin Elections Commission didn’t come to an agreement on Monday on how to address the ruling. The commission was divided with a 3-3 vote, which means the state won’t take action on the ruling for now.
The state uses the Electronic Registration Information Center or ERIC. ERIC uses data from the DMV, Social Security and the U.S. Postal Service to see when a registered voter has moved.
Voters who were flagged based on ERIC’s data were sent a postcard to retain their registration records.
Barrett said during the press conference that out of the 35,000 Milwaukee residents flagged, 186 people responded, and 1,327 registered somewhere else. He continued and said many residents thought the postcard was spam mail or a scam.
Barrett stressed that residents shouldn’t have to face additional barriers to voting.
“An individual’s voting registration status is important and should never be viewed as a disposable commodity.” Barrett said. “It provides access to voting which represents the foundation of democracy.”
A large number of people who would be removed from voter rolls are in Milwaukee and Madison.
“Some might say Milwaukee and Madison are more transient cities than other municipalities in the state,” Neil Albrecht, executive director of Milwaukee’s Election Commission, said. “I think that’s very speculative.”
A group of attorneys announced Friday that they are also filing a legal challenge on behalf of Wisconsin voters who are impacted by the voter purge.
Listen to the WPR report here.
Milwaukee Mayor Says 35K Milwaukee Residents Could Be Impacted In Voter Purge was originally published by Wisconsin Public Radio.
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Read more about 2020 Voter Purge here