No one is insulting poll workers

Poll workers help Emma Graves, Milwaukee,  get her
Photo: jsonline

Several years ago on my blog on the old FranklinNOW website I conducted a year-long examination of the columns written by non- Journal Sentinel writers published on Sunday in the paper’s Crossroads section.

At the end of that calendar year I documented that two-thirds of the pieces were written by liberals.

The trend has continued. The Crossroads section is a feeding frenzy for the left.

Today’s paper includes a column by Gerald Nichol of Madison, a former Dane County District Attorney and Dane County Circuit Judge. He was an original member of the former Government Accountability Board and served as its chairman.

We don’t need to say more but we will.

The former Government Accountability Board hated the concept of photo ID and didn’t exactly break a sweat to enforce it.

Here’s an excerpt from Nichol’s column:

Everybody is talking about voter fraud and election fraud these days. Did millions of undocumented immigrants vote for Hillary Clinton, as President Donald Trump claims? Did the Russians hack our elections systems and social media to tilt the election for President Trump, as some on the left claim?

Many people seem to have opinions on these questions, but unfortunately, some are outrageous and unsupported by the facts.

Frankly, much of what I hear from both sides is a terrible insult to the 40,000 frontline poll workers and local government officials who work so hard to make Wisconsin’s elections fair and honest. These are not faceless bureaucrats running our elections; they are our friends and neighbors, and they deserve our trust.

These conscientious public servants take great care to ensure that the statewide voter list is accurate and up to date, including the removal of people who have died or been convicted of a felony. And, whether they agree with the law or not, they faithfully enforce the voter ID requirement to prevent the largely nonexistent crime of voter impersonation.

Instead of crying fraud when you do not agree with election results, why not be a poll worker to become part of our proud tradition of clean, open and fair elections?

Who exactly  is dissing the poll workers?

Many of you know I once worked for former state Senator Mary Lazich. She published the following in her old blog on July 30, 2009, before photo ID was the law in Wisconsin:

A few legislative sessions ago, I served on the Senate Labor and Election Process Reform Committee that toured the state, conducting public hearings.  The clerks and poll workers that offered their valuable expertise specifically requested that the hard work they do on Election Day be accurate. They work very long days and must depend on the communications of all citizens.

That is why a far loftier and commendable goal for the Board would be to endorse and then work with the Legislature to enact a photo ID requirement for voting. An identification in written form allows clerks and poll workers to facilitate citizen communication, speed long lines, and maintain accuracy. Poll workers truly want a democratic process in place. I recall poll workers testifying passionately that they want their work to be accurate and be respected. They testified that a written communication such as driver license or other identification allows them to confidently perform tasks with accuracy and maintain a voting process in Wisconsin that gives the public confidence and erases concerns and bickering. 

The highly acclaimed, nonpartisan Wisconsin Legislative Audit Bureau released an audit dated November 28, 2007 recommending, “The Elections Board and, after it is replaced, the Government Accountability Board request that municipal clerks obtain birth dates from voters during future elections and consider ways to more easily facilitate the collection of this information.”  That is a strong and clear message that the state should adopt this common sense election reform measure that the voting public has been clamoring for.

Proponents of photo ID have absolutely no concern about the integrity of poll workers. They want to stop cheaters. The thought that cheating isn’t or hasn’t been going on is naivete with a capital “N.”

If anyone is doing a disservice to the poll workers it’s those like Nichol who suggest they’re incapable of working with a photo ID requirement.

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