Conservative WI Supreme Court blocks Democratic governor’s order to delay election over coronavirus – By Stephen Wolf (Daily Kos) / April 6 2020
On Monday, Wisconsin’s conservative-majority Supreme Court ruled 4-2 along ideological lines to block Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ executive order that had canceled in-person voting in Tuesday’s presidential primary and competitive state Supreme Court election, reversing Evers’ decision to postpone the election until June 9 due to the coronavirus pandemic. The court’s decision means voting will proceed on Tuesday even as hundreds of polling places around the state won’t be open and the state has ordered people to shelter in place to and avoid public gatherings to stop the spread of the virus.
Earlier in the day, Evers had issued an order to postpone in-person voting and call the Republican legislature into another special session so that they could expand alternative voting methods such as voting by mail. However, Republicans have consistently opposed any effort to make it easier to safely vote, and they quickly filed a lawsuit before the sympathetic state court to stop him.
Republicans’ intransigence had already led to a flurry of litigation and widespread confusion as in-person voting has increasingly become unsafe due to the virus. Indeed, in Wisconsin’s biggest city of Milwaukee, which is a Democratic stronghold and home to a majority of its black population, officials slashed the number of in-person polling places from 180 to just five, or one location for every 10,000 voters expected to vote in-person on Tuesday. Roughly 500,000 voters statewide still had yet to return their requested absentee ballots as of Sunday, meaning the ongoing battle over a federal court order extending the deadline to return absentee ballots from April 7 to April 13 could leave hundreds of thousands of voters disenfranchised.