MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A bipartisan group, including former Republican Gov. Tommy Thompson, dedicated to building trust and confidence in elections launched Monday in Wisconsin — a state that was at the center of false claims of election fraud in 2020.
Keep Our Republic was formed in 2020 and operates in the battleground states of Pennsylvania and Michigan. Those states, along with Wisconsin and a handful of others, were at the center of former President Donald Trump’s false claims that the election had been stolen after his loss in 2020.
Keep Our Republic said in a statement, announcing its Wisconsin launch, that it was expanding its mission of election education, combatting misinformation and ensuring the integrity of the democratic process. It’s largely focused on the post-election process of canvassing the certifying the votes.
In other states, the group has collaborated with universities, legal organizations, and other groups to conduct research, issue recommendations, and offer training sessions.
The group’s efforts in Wisconsin will be led by Kathy Bernier, a former Republican state senator and Chippewa County election clerk, who chaired the Senate’s elections committee during the 2020 election and was one of the most vocal critics of Trump’s claims of election fraud.
Democratic members of the Wisconsin advisory council include former Democratic state Rep. David Bowen, former Republican Assembly Speaker Mike Huebsch, former Democratic Lt. Gov. Barbara Lawton, former U.S. Rep. Reid Ribble and longtime Republican lobbyist Bill McCoshen.