In Wisconsin, a significant ruling has emerged from Racine County Judge Eugene Gasiorkiewicz, who decided in favor of a voter who challenged the legality of a mobile van used for absentee voting in Racine. The lawsuit, filed by Ken Brown and represented by the Wisconsin Institute for Liberty and Law (also known as WILL), argued that the city’s use of a mobile van to get absentee ballots during the 2022 primary election violated state law and disproportionately benefited Democratic candidates. The van’s operations were funded by the Center for Tech and Civic Life, a non-profit associated with Mark Zuckerberg, which has faced criticism for its alleged partisan funding in elections.
Judge Gasiorkiewicz’s ruling points out that while Wisconsin state law doesn’t explicitly ban the use of mobile vans for absentee voting, it also doesn’t provide provisions for such practices. He stated that the absence of legal authorization for mobile van absentee ballot sites made their use contrary to law. The decision underscores the importance of adhering strictly to election laws and the potential implications for future elections, including the 2024 presidential race.
The judge also agreed with Brown’s assertion that the placement of these mobile voting sites favored the Democratic Party, violating the statutory requirement for neutrality in alternate absentee ballot sites. This ruling is seen as a victory for election integrity advocates like WILL, who argue for secure and non-partisan election administration. Lucas Vebber, Deputy Counsel at WILL, expressed satisfaction with the outcome, emphasizing the importance of holding government entities accountable to the rule of law in election processes.
This decision reflects ongoing debates and legal battles over election procedures in the United States, particularly in swing states like Wisconsin, where voting rules and methods have come under intense scrutiny in recent election cycles. The ruling may set a precedent for similar cases and influence how absentee voting is conducted in future elections, with a focus on ensuring legal compliance and political impartiality.