Federal judge strikes down Wisconsin’s Republican voter ID law

This is great news for anyone who opposes efforts by Republicans here in Wisconsin to suppress voters.

A federal judge in Milwaukee has struck down Wisconsin’s voter Identification law, saying it unfairly burdens poor and minority voters.

U.S. District Judge Lynn Adelman issued his long-awaited decision Tuesday. It invalidates Wisconsin’s law.

Wisconsin’s law would have required voters to show a state-issued photo ID at the polls. Supporters said it would cut down on voter fraud and boost public confidence in the integrity of the election process.

But Adelman sided with opponents, who said it disproportionately excluded poor and minority voters because they’re less likely to have photo IDs or the documents needed to get them.

I’ve long believed that Republican efforts to enact voter ID laws here in Wisconsin were a case of trying to implement a “solution” to a problem that simply didn’t exist, and I’m heartened that Judge Adelman agreed.


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20 thoughts on “Federal judge strikes down Wisconsin’s Republican voter ID law

  1. I am not commenting for or against the voter ID issue, but if I follow Adelman’s logic “who said it disproportionately excluded poor and minority voters because they’re less likely to have photo IDs or the documents needed to get them”,…

    Does the photo ID requirement exclude poor and minorities from attaining a WI drivers license or purchasing cold medication containing pseudoephedrine?

    1. “…25% of African-Americans, 8% of whites …lack photo IDs…”based upon a six year old survey: http://www.politifact.com/texas/statements/2012/jul/11/eric-holder/eric-holder-says-recent-studies-show-25-percent-af/
      Other searches reveal a lesser, but similar disparity between whites and people of color; i.e., Hispanics and African-Americans. It is my opinion that the Alec, Walker, and the GOP legislature bill is racist and an effort to suppress the turnout of a segment of the population, the poor and minorities, who usually vote the Democratic ticket.

      I can find no study if the same extreme disparity in race exists in purchases of “cold medication containing pseudoephedrine.” Why would you make such a statement/question that has nothing to do with the judge’s decision or the topic? Is it not common knowledge what ingredient is prime in making meth? Do people of color and the poor engage in criminal activities more than the rich white Republicans? No need to answer.

      1. Duane, Couple of things,..
        I agree the current “voter ID” wrangling is all about suppression. That is unfortunate and is wasting time/resources.
        Regarding elections, the real question for me is do we want a valid/accurate election or not? I think we have to admit that there is plenty of room for error currently. After all, humans are involved. How much? don’t know, 1%? 3%, .1%? No one knows because good data does not exist. And if we do not think the current error in the system warrants some attention, then we will accept the next Bush/Gore 2000 election.
        The point attempted was that if ANYONE, has enough gumption to get off the couch and get a drivers license or cold medicine they can certainly go vote if they want. Providing an ID to vote seems fundamental as with any system of value.

        1. Geez IG,

          If you need to persist in worrying yourself about election integrity, start where there is the greatest potential for an election to be stolen.


          Providing adequate voting sites and sufficient hours or maybe a three-day paid national holiday (a three day weekend?) to allow every eligible voter to get to the polls will do more than anything to insure absolute election integrity.

          Your “real,” question is BS, how many federal judges have to tell you?

          1. NQ,
            Not worried, just asked a question whether or not election integrity was important to folks or not. Humans are involved and they cannot be trusted.
            All citizens of age have a responsibility to vote. And if they can’t figure out where and when, tough cookies. It ain’t that hard.
            How many federal judges need to tell me? Zero. YOU should try thinking for yourself for a change. You may feel better.

            1. IG,

              Here’s an idea. How about you just admit you’re wrong on this one? How hard would that be? You’re wrong. It ain’t that big a deal.

              1. SC, Just because I do not subscribe to the Blogging Blue litter box as a default does not make me “wrong”. I agreed with Duane and asked a question. Deal with it.

                1. IG,

                  I didn’t read your previous comment where you’d finally, finally agreed that this voter ID bullshit was all about suppressing likely democratic votes. The last time I posted on this you were still pretending it was about election integrity. My bad.

                2. Thursday 9:21 AM, Yes, you asked a question and then you definitively answered it yourself in the same paragraph, that voter ID was necessary for integrity in elections.

                  Providing an ID to vote seems fundamental as with any system of value.

                  You ask a question you STILL claim to have, “the,” ONLY answer for, why? Maybe because you still don’t fu*king get it?

                  There and @3:53pm you spew some more negative racial stereotyping about some, “they,” who if, “they,” are too stupid to figure things out as far as voting, then screw them? Jobs, school, poverty, child or elder-care, or just being elderly, or physically infirmed, or not enough access to convenient polling places, i.e. people who don’t own vehicles and thus maybe don’t have a driver’s license, are of no consequence to you. And those lazy people should be getting off the couch, and be gettin’ er done, no excuses. No allowance for any of these conditions from you. “They’re,” just screwed is your answer, that’s O-KKK with you.

                  @3:53 PM (also responding to me) you completely ignored my suggestion of digital, “election fraud,” as potentially a greater threat to election integrity, or now consider this, a Kathy Nicholas type scenario, interference by someone with nefarious intentions. More likely to potentially disrupt election integrity than voter ID, just maybe?

                  After ignoring my benign suggestions of other fraud potential and turning election days into public holidays, you can’t resist personally bashing me and my ability to think for myself. Apparently the only cheap, though undeserved retort left to you to validate your thoroughly debunked beliefs, because there exists NO valid argument and NO data to back your assertions about voter ID being necessary to ensure election integrity.

                  Keep referring to yourself as, “independent,” guy, because that joke certainly does keep me perpetually feeling much better. Now that the weather is getting better maybe you and Cliven can go for a drive and get some data on all those people sitting on the front porches with nothing to do to prevent them getting their ID’s and from voting when you say they should.

                  1. NQ,
                    There you go, flying off the handle again. Try to relax, ok?
                    I have agreed the “voter ID” on the table now is founded in ill motivations, politics, etc. and is all wrong.
                    Then I ask essentially, should there be a bit more verification in the process? Though you have not answered directly, it is pretty clear your answer is NO.

                    So here is where I am coming from. If I put a bowl of fruit on the break room table at work with instructions for folks to take ONE, some people will take two. If I park a wagon load of pumpkins road side with a sign that says $1.50 each I can guarantee you at the end of the day my inventory/dollars will be off, and not in my favor. Why, because humans left unchecked will take advantage. I’m no Dr. Phil, but, the same applies voting.

                    Who was your bitch before I came along? 🙂

                    1. My actual self-serve, roadside veggie stand always has about 15% – 25% more than what I am asking for and nobody has walked off with the rather expensive portable coolers. Could you simply fear being treated with the same presumptions you hold about others in the trust category? If someone who was hungry but had no money, ate, it wouldn’t bother me a bit.

                      I recall that Dr. Phil is/was an entertainment celebrity and a widely recognized, serious quack in regard to his pretense to ever having any credible professional personal counseling or analysis to offer. Seems that your repeated accusations and presumed beliefs about MY personal motivation and MY supposed state of mind, is NOT stopping you from playing Dr Phil in the comment section here. Pretense to quackery is your proof of your ideological credibility now?

                      Your disingenuous humor in your final sentence, repeating the “club for growth,” meme of “unfair,” criticism is a clear attempt at more abusiveness to discredit someone factually debunking your election beliefs and pointing out the racial bigotry in your written statements and calling you out on your INITIATION of unwarranted personal attacks against a commenter, instead of engaging in a discussion. Queue the tiny violins.

        2. Thanks I.G. Then we are in agreement for the most part; there may be minimal fraud or even mistakes, but inconsequential and certainly nothing on the scale of Daley’s Chicago long ago which would warrant a photo I.D. for a quarter of the population. On my first time voting in this district 20 yeas ago, I displayed my phone bill or a copy of my property tax bill. Since then I merely supply my name and the clerk supplies me with a ballot after checking my name on her list of registered voters.

      1. No you are comparing apples and oranges.
        All I am saying is anyone who wants to cast a vote can. Get of your dead a55 and vote. We all have to jump through hoops for a variety of reasons.
        But what I think I am really hearing is “voting integrity does not matter”. That answers my question.

        1. Obviously, all you are EVER hearing is the sound of your own voice. LOeverlovin’L

  2. IG, I think part of the issue here is the ‘free’ State ID, not the driver’s license ID. You can get a ‘free’ state ID by providing documentation that is frequently not free to obtain, and the requirements attached to the documentation (all names must match etc.) can put up further roadblocks. Ruthelle Frank (neither poor nor a minority, it’s true) would have had to spend a few hundred dollars getting all her free ID ducks in a row. I don’t know if Adelman used the words ‘poll tax’, but impediments like secondary financial requirements will indeed force some voters away from the ability to vote. I think Adelman in his ruling was providing a totality of reasons why this law needed to go. There were many.

    1. Yep, Sue hit the nail on the head.

      if getting a “free” ID in order to vote actually creates a financial burden, then it’s no better than a poll tax.

  3. It doesn’t take the Great Karnac for this one, but expect Walker to be calling the special legislative session for the next (already prepared) ALEC version of the same BS in the Friday news dump.

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