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Evers asks Wisconsin Supreme Court to OK ballot drop boxes

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(The Center Square) – Wisconsin’s governor is asking the state Supreme Court to allow ballot drop boxes ahead of this November’s election.

Gov. Tony Evers filed a brief with the court, asking the new liberal-majority to overturn a ruling from 2022 that said ballot drop boxes are not allowed under state law.

“At the very heart of our democracy is the fundamental freedom to vote. In Wisconsin, we must work to protect that freedom and to empower our clerks and election administrators working hard at the local level to make decisions that are right for their communities. Drop box voting is safe and secure, and there is nothing in Wisconsin’s election laws that prohibit our local clerks from using this secure option, absent an incorrect ruling by our courts,” Evers said in a statement.

Wisconsin law does not specifically allow for ballot drop boxes anywhere other than the local clerk’s office.

The then-conservative-majority court based its ruling that banned ballot drop boxes on that fact.

But Evers says ballot drop boxes somewhere else in the community are no different than a drop box at the clerk’s office.

“All across our country, election officials have chosen to use drop boxes to ensure that all eligible voters can freely cast their ballots. And they’ve done so while keeping ballots safe and secure,” Evers added.

The governor’s brief argues the 2022 ruling against ballot drop boxes “causes confusion” among local clerks.

Ballot drop boxes became an issue in the 2020 election when they popped up across the state. The Wisconsin Elections Commission says 40% of ballots cast in that election were cast through a drop box.

Republicans have said the ballot drop boxes are not secure, and there’s no way to know who is dropping off which ballots.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments about ballot drop boxes in May.

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