Van Hollen urges Wisconsin Supreme Court to reinstate Voter ID law before November election
Post by Emily Mills on 8/21/2012 12:14pm
In a move announced Tuesday by the Department of Justice state Attorney General J.B. Van Hollen will ask the Wisconsin Supreme Court to remove two injunctions currently in place against the voter ID law passed last year, and to implement the new rules in time for the November presidential election.
“No quarter has been given in defending Voter ID,” Van Hollen said in a statement. “My action today, now allowed under the Court's rules of procedure, gives the Wisconsin Supreme Court another opportunity to bring prompt, clear resolution to the law and settle this matter in advance of the November elections.”
Van Hollen and the DOJ are planning to file a “Petition to Bypass Court of Appeals” and “Motion for Consolidation” with the Wisconsin Supreme Court, in each of two legal actions originally commenced in Dane County Circuit Court challenging the state's “Voter ID” law, 2011 Wis. Act 23.
The attorney general will also ask the Court to place an immediate stay on both of the Circuit Court injunctions against the voter ID law. Those cases are League of Women Voters of Wisconsin Education Network, Inc, et al. v. Scott Walker, et al, and Milwaukee Branch of the NAACP, et al. v. Scott Walker, et al.
There are two federal cases against the voter ID law currently pending in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Wisconsin, but while an initial trial date for the cases had been set for September 10, they have since been taken off the calendar while the federal judge waits to see the results of the state suits.
“People in this state are very frustrated that a common sense law enacted by the legislature and signed by the Governor has been blocked," Van Hollen added. "While I respect the judicial process and the right to challenge a law in court, it is time for our Supreme Court to take control of these cases."
In a statement released shortly after the news broke, Executive Director Scot Ross of the liberal advocacy group One Wisconsin Now fired back at the attorney general:
"JB Van Hollen has spent years, and untold tax dollars, unsuccessfully chasing phantom vote impropriety allegations to justify his support for disenfranchising hundreds of thousands of legal voters," Scot said. "He’s either lying about rampant 'voter fraud' or he is incompetent at his job. Van Hollen announced he was going to do this at a Romney-Ryan campaign rally and now he’s using his taxpayer financed office to convince the partisan, conservative Supreme Court majority to do the political thing, not the right thing."
Emily Mills is Editor-At-Large for Dane101, as well as Editor of Our Lives Magazine. She is also a freelance writer, photographer, actor, and musician (drummer and singer in local band Little Red Wolf). Originally from several states up and down the Midwest Emily has called Madison home since 2000. Contact her at