It was announced Thursday by the city of La Crosse that polling places for Tuesday’s elections would be cut from 13 to eight, in having to deal with the COVID-19 pandemic.
Meanwhile, Milwaukee on Friday, looks to be making some drastic cuts in polling places, according to Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reporter Molly Beck:
Wisconsin Republicans brushed off Gov. Tony Evers call to meet in a special session to discuss postponing the election amid safety concerns of congregating a bunch of people in one location.
The session, planned Saturday afternoon, was for lawmakers to take up bills to allow clerks to mail absentee ballots to voters who haven’t requested one by May 19, then give voters until May 26 to return them.
Republican legislative leaders who control both houses of the state’s government, have to convene for the special session by the Democratic governor, but they don’t have to take any action. They could gavel in and out of session like they did for gun control measures Evers called in a special session weeks ago.
The state’s GOP already rejected a request from Evers last week to shift the election to mail-only ballots, calling it a “fantasy” so close to the election. That was the first call for a delay in the election called by Evers.
State Sen. Jennifer Shilling, the Democratic minority leader, as well as Assembly minority leader, Democrat Gordon Hintz, said in statement the elections should be postponed.
“Having tens of thousands of people gathered at polling places around the state on Tuesday will result in the further spreading of the COVID-19 virus,” the statement said, in part. “This will increase the burden on our health care system and ultimately cost more lives. … Forcing people to choose between their health and their right to vote is not an acceptable path forward.”
Other states have already delayed their primaries to protect poll workers and voters from the virus.