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Wisconsin official refused voting locations near schools because ‘students lean democratic’

Republican party attempts to suppress voting at University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.


Brianna Holt


Published Oct 25, 2016   Updated Feb 28, 2020, 9:43 pm CST

It’s common for college students to get around mostly by foot or bike. Not all campuses allow freshmen to have vehicles, many can’t afford to bring a car to school, and parking always sucks. This makes voting locations on college campuses vital.

On Tuesday, emails were released to the Nation showing that the Republican party attempted to suppress voting at University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.

When eight different student groups sought an early voting location on campus to help with the long lines, the city of Green Bay chose to deny their request. Instead, only one early voting location was opened on Sept. 26 for the entire city.

“UWGB is a polling location for students and residents on Election Day but I feel by asking for this to be the site for early voting is encouraging the students to vote more than benefiting the city as a whole. I have heard it said that students lean more toward the democrats…. I have spoken with our Chief of Staff and others at City Hall and they agree that budget wise this isn’t going to happen. Do I have an argument about it being more of a benefit to the democrats?” City Clerk Kris Teske wrote in an email on Aug. 26 to David Buerger, counsel to the Wisconsin Ethics Commission.

This is not the first time Wisconsin has dealt with Republicans taking initiative to suppress the Democratic vote.

In 2014, Wisconsin’s Republican legislature constrained early voting sites to one location per city and removed early voting hours on nights and weekends.

Students also have to go through a tough process just to vote at many colleges in Wisconsin. Student IDs lack a signature and two-year expiration date, making them ineligible for voting identification. In order to attain an accepted ID, students must provide proof of enrollment and residency. The long process sometimes strays students away from voting altogether.

H/T the Nation

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*First Published: Oct 25, 2016, 9:42 pm CDT