A conservative group is asking the state Supreme Court to block certification of election results and allow the Republican-controlled Legislature to appoint the state’ presidential electors.
The suit was immediately condemned by Democratic AG Josh Kaul, who said on Twitter that it “seeks to disenfranchise every Wisconsinite who voted in the 2020 presidential election.”
The conservative group previously sought to bar five Wisconsin cities from using $6.3 million in grants from a private center to help with fall elections. The new suit from the Wisconsin Voters Alliance against the state Elections Commission alleges the grants given to the cities of Green Bay, Kenosha, Madison, Milwaukee and Racine by the Center for Tech and Civic Life facilitated “the use of absentee voting in violation of Wisconsin law.”
The filing asks the state Supreme Court to nullify the outcome of the presidential election based on a series of thinly-sourced accusations alleging 144,000 votes were cast illegally while more than 12,000 absentee ballots returned by Republicans were not counted.
Those figures are based on the opinions of former Trump campaign official Matt Braynard, whose estimates are largely based on personal interpretations of voter data combined with outreach by a call center his organization runs.
Braynard claims, for example, 18 percent of the 96,711 voters the state Elections Commission says requested an absentee ballot but did not return it did not in fact request an absentee ballot at all.
Braynard offers no evidence to substantiate that claim, saying the figure is “my opinion, to a reasonable degree of scientific certainty.” He said he came to that number by using his call center to reach out to voters that a third-party database says requested an absentee ballot but did not return one.
Municipal clerks in Wisconsin can only issue absentee ballots to registered voters who request them.
The filing asks the high court to void the popular vote circumvent the normal electoral process in order to allow the Republican-controlled state Legislature to determine which party’s slate of presidential electors will cast Wisconsin’s votes when the Electoral College convenes on Dec. 14.
WEC Administrator Meagan Wolfe, the state’s top election official, has previously indicated there is no role for the Legislature in the election certification process or in picking the electors.
Kaul promised that the state Department of Justice “will ensure that Wisconsin’s presidential electors are selected based on the will of the more than 3 million Wisconsin voters who cast a ballot.”
The Supreme Court ordered the Elections Commission to file a response brief by Friday at 4 p.m. A spokesman for the Elections Commission declined to comment.