Today is Election Day in Wisconsin.
Dane County Clerk Scott McDonell and Madison City Clerk Maribeth Witzel-Behl are working with the UW-Madison Political Science Department (Kenneth Mayer) to quantify the effect on voters of the Republican voter obstruction project, specifically the mandated and narrow range of photo voter IDs as a new precondition to vote, (Neumann, WKOW-TV) (Novak, Wisconsin State Journal).
Today, Madison, Wisconsin poll workers (election inspectors) will time how long the voter ID requirement takes voters to satisfy, for the purpose of plugging the numbers into existing models at MIT using Queuing Theory to predict and quantify how congested polling places obstruct and delay voters.
Obstructing, delaying and frustrating voters remains a Republican Party political objective.
"There a coupe of different benefits for this initiative. It lets you the voter know how long the voter will have to wait, and voters can adjust their schedules. Secondly, it allows voting officials to make adjustments in administering polling places to help the voter," said Dane County Clerk Scott McDonell.
The Republican project of keeping away voters held in disfavor by the Republican Party comes as 300,000 Wisconsin voters are estimated to lack the necessary ID to vote.
Republicans (and only Republicans) mandated the photo voter ID requirement in 2011. Today's will be the first election in which a statewide race will be on the ballot mandating the Republican-demanded voter ID. Turnout is expected to be below 10 percent for this low turn-out state primary.
After preventing veterans from using their Veterans Health Identification
Cards (VIC) to satisfy the photo voter ID condition, (Mal Contends Sept. 2011; Mal Contends Nov. 2103; Mal Contends July 2012), Republicans are expected to expand the list of acceptable voter IDs to include VICs which are issued by the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, sources at the capitol say, likely in SB 295 as an amendment.
Stopping veterans from voting is not politically wise in a presidential election year.
Today at a Fitchburg, Wisconsin polling station, the extra time at this low-turnout election for this voter as the sole voter at the polling place is some 34 seconds, a time that would be compounded substantially in a busy election day such as April 5 (Wisconsin presidential primary day) and November 8.
Congested election days have been engineered by Wisconsin Republicans since 2011 through a host of election changes designed both to stop people from voting and making it more difficult to vote.