December 13, 2012
Republicans would understandably hope to downplay the inevitable controversy over any move ending same-day voter registration in Wisconsin. We therefore hope last week’s statements that nothing much is going on there—from officials known to favor repeal—are meant to douse the flames without extinguishing the fire.
At least that’s what we hope. Only ten states have adopted laws allowing election-day registration at polling places. The other 40 may or may not have foreseen how same-day registration would be used to overwhelm ballot security; either way they’ve made the wiser choice.
For proof, look across the Mississippi. In Minnesota, well over 6,200 election-day registrations from 2008 proved fraudulent. Post-election efforts to verify names and addresses revealed one or both to be fictitious in that many cases.
Remember, 2008 was the election that made Saturday Night Live clown Al Franken Minnesota’s junior Senator, furnishing the crucial 60th vote for the monstrosity of Obamacare. Franken’s winning margin? 312 votes.
In Wisconsin this year, same-day registration chaos prevailed at polling places in the June recall that narrowly deposed Republican State Senator Van Wanggaard. The November presidential election saw 57,000 polling-place registrations in Milwaukee alone.
Repeal acquired fresh importance as a ballot-security measure last Friday, in light of statements by entrepreneurial litigator Vince Megna, candidate for the state Supreme Court seat held by Justice Pat Roggensack.
Megna said he’d rule Wisconsin’s Voter ID law unconstitutional, effectively declaring he will prejudge cases and that he considers this a virtue that ought to decide the April election.
There was a time when Megna’s words would have doomed his candidacy. Now, we’d say the integrity of Wisconsin elections needs multiple new layers of protection.