Saturday, November 27, 2021

Play

Don't want the hassles of Black Friday - consider a refurbished gift this year; day after Thanksgiving travel could be messy - and supporters regroup for recreational marijuana in South Dakota.

Play

Big retailers predict an historic holiday shopping season, but small businesses are not sharing that optimism, and economists weigh in on what s behind the nation's labor shortages.

Play

South Dakota foster kids find homes with Native families; a conservative group wants oil and gas reform; rural Pennsylvania residents object to planes flying above tree tops; and poetry debuts to celebrate the land.

WI to Hold Tuesday Primary Amid Public Health Concerns

Play

Tuesday, April 7, 2020   

MADISON, Wis. -- Wisconsin still will hold its presidential primary today, despite late action by the governor to try to postpone it. Voting rights activists say the state should have never reached this point.

On Monday, the state Supreme Court sided with Republican leaders in the state Legislature to strike down Democratic Gov. Tony Evers' decision to postpone the election until June. Voters' rights groups have said the health and safety of voters was placed on the back burner by elected officials during the ordeal.

Executive director of Wisconsin Voices Dana Schultz said their actions will have a lasting effect.

"That will have ramifications for how people think about our democracy for years and probably decades to come," Schultz said.

She said it's especially true for African-American voters, who feel pressure to head to to the polls because they face more barriers to cast a ballot in states such as Wisconsin.

The Democratic governor initially agreed to hold the election, but changed course out of safety concerns. GOP lawmakers said there was plenty of warning about the pandemic and voters who were worried about safety should already have taken steps to cast their ballot by mail.

Matt Barreto, co-founder of the UCLA Voting Rights Project, said Wisconsin's situation underscores the need to implement universal vote-by-mail during the pandemic.

"This is not a Republican or Democratic issue, this is a health issue," Barreto said. "And there is no justifiable reason to continue to promote in-person voting."

Barreto dismissed concerns from Republicans that accepting all ballots by mail would lead to fraud. He said states have plenty of safeguards and pointed to successful mail-in ballot elections in Utah, a largely conservative state where election officials say 90% of residents cast their ballots by mail.

Schultz said in addition to alienating people of color, younger voters may too be turned off by the way the this process has played out.

"So what I'm very nervous about is someone who's 18, 19, 20 years old, who was planning on registering and voting for the first time in the presidential primary, and this is the kind of mess that they're walking into," she said.

Political observers have said the outcome of a state Supreme Court race is likely one dominant motivation for the GOP opposing the postponement. They say a legal fight to remove several hundred thousand voters from the rolls is tied to the importance of that race.

Support for this reporting was provided by the Carnegie Corporation of New York.



get more stories like this via email

Vicki Harder-Thorne is honoring 30 years of sweat equity her parents put into restoring 80 acres of land in Ottawa County. (Harder-Thorne)

Environment

COLUMBUS, Ohio -- Succession is an inevitable process for Ohio farmers, and it can also be an opportunity to re-imagine the land. Vicki Harder-…


Environment

HELENA, Mont. -- To honor the Biden administration's steps toward greater ties with tribal nations, conservation groups are calling on it to list the …

Environment

RICHMOND, Va. -- In central Virginia, permanent access to land is one of the biggest barriers to farming. A new land-trust model aims to secure both …


Old electronics can be sold, donated or recycled instead of thrown out to reduce waste. (Mihail/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

BOSTON -- This holiday season, consumer advocates are urging Commonwealth residents to consider giving gifts that don't require purchasing anything…

Social Issues

AUSTIN, Texas -- Supply chain delays have some holiday shoppers stressed that gifts won't be on store shelves on this "Black Friday," or won't arrive …

The Michigan Energy Assistance program can help with paying utility bills and weatherization tips to keep the heat in your home. (weyo/Adobe Stock)

Social Issues

DETROIT -- As cold weather moves in, state agencies are working to make sure Michiganders know how to apply for the Michigan Energy Assistance …

Social Issues

NEW YORK -- A team of New York-based filmmakers is producing a documentary about reclaiming Indigenous heritage, told through the experiences of an 18…

Social Issues

ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- A new report ranks Maryland as one of the worst states in providing support for young victims of sex trafficking. While Maryland …

 

Phone: 303.448.9105 Toll Free: 888.891.9416 Fax: 208.247.1830 Your trusted member- and audience-supported news source since 1996 Copyright 2021