Connect with us

Politics

Wisconsin GOP leader says it’s safe to vote while dressed in PPE gear

Published

on

  • Wisconsin’s Republican State Assembly Speaker Robin Vos assured voters it was safe to vote in person during the state’s Tuesday primary election while decked out in full personal protective gear.
  • Vos argued that drive-through voting was still safe, saying, “you can request that the person come out, they’ll deliver you a ballot, they’ll check your ID, you are incredibly safe to go out.”
  • As dozens of states have postponed their presidential primaries to May or June, in-person voting for Wisconsin’s Tuesday election still proceeded as scheduled.
  • As COVID-19 cases steadily rose and the state told citizens to stay at home, Evers made multiple 11th-hour attempts to move to an all-mail election or postpone it all together, which Vos and other Republicans blocked. 
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Wisconsin’s Republican State Assembly Speaker Robin Vos assured voters it was safe to vote in person during the state’s Tuesday primary election while decked out in full personal protective gear including a gown, gloves, and a mask. 

As dozens of states have postponed their presidential primaries to May or June, Wisconsin’s Tuesday election still proceeded as scheduled, despite the Governor telling Wisconsinites to stay at home after Republicans in the state legislature refused to act to postpone or make it all-mail.

In an interview with the Racine-based news outlet, the Journal Times, Vos — fully dressed in protective gear — insisted it was safe to vote. On election day, Vos volunteered at a drive-through polling location in Burlington, Wisconsin. 

 

“They gave us PPE that is mandatory to wear, so we are here today, making sure we do everything safely. I think it really is a testament to the people who ran this election, they really know what they are doing, they worked really hard to make sure that … everybody here is safe,” Vos said, arguing that going to a drive-through polling location was safer than a trip to the grocery store or Wal-mart. 

“You can come to a polling place and do it safely. You have the ability to come to curbside voting like they’re doing here. Even if it’s in a different municipality without drive-up voting you can request that the person come out, they’ll deliver you a ballot, they’ll check your ID, you are incredibly safe to go out,” Vos said, encouraging people to “use their own best judgment.” 

For weeks leading up to the election, both Gov. Tony Evers and Republican leaders planned to hold the election as scheduled. But as COVID-19 cases steadily rose and the state told citizens to stay at home, Evers made multiple 11th-hour attempts to move to an all-mail election or postpone it all together, which Vos and other Republicans blocked. 

After a federal judge ruled against several plaintiffs attempting to delay the election on April 2,  Gov. Tony Evers made in a last-minute attempt to postpone the vote to June with an executive order on Monday. Vos and the Republican Majority Leader of the state Senate immediately challenged the order in Wisconsin’s majority-conservative State Supreme Court, which sided against Evers and blocked his attempt to delay the election.

And in a separate court case, the US Supreme Court ruled 5-4 to overturn a decision from a federal appeals court judge that extended absentee voting to April 13, ruling that voters had to have their ballots postmarked by election day. 

As of Tuesday morning, the Wisconsin Elections Commission reported that over 400,000 absentee ballots sent out to voters had not been returned, with an additional 9,400 voters who requested ballots but did not receive them in time. 

The Supreme Court’s decision effectively left voters who had not yet received their absentee ballot with a difficult choice: either risk their health to wait in long lines to vote in person or not vote at all. 

Vos claimed that drive-through and curbside voting would help keep voters safe. However, it wasn’t an option for thousands of voters in big cities like Milwaukee and Waukesha, many of which had to close down polling locations due to understaffing as many poll workers stayed home. 

Milwaukee, a city of over 500,000 people, which usually has 180 open polling locations, is operating with just five on Tuesday, creating hours-long lines to vote in many neighborhoods. 

LoadingSomething is loading.

Continue Reading
Advertisement Find your dream job

Trending