Wisconsin, Legislature, Scott Walker discussed on The Daily
Even as the state voted for Barack Obama twice. Republican governor Scott Walker has won his reelection bid. They kept winning the time in four years. Republican Scott Walker has won a statewide election for governor. So by the time you get two thousand. Eighteen major shift happen overnight Wisconsin voters. You've elected a Democrat governor. When Walker loses his reelection bid to Tony vers? The race was almost too close to call but overnight Democrat Tony. Evers narrowly beat out. Gop incumbent Scott Walker denying him a third term Republicans in the state legislature have already learned a lesson from the years prior. That's more important to wield power than it is to be seen as a political compromiser. How does that play out? When all of a sudden there is a democratic governor in Iverson's who I assume wants to start making compromises with the Republican legislature the Republicans make clear. That is not what they're interested in. Republicans stung by their losses in. The midterms are moving forward with last ditch efforts to hang onto power. It's happening in at least two swing states Wisconsin and Michigan. The country is really watching this morning. As lawmakers here in Wisconsin work through the night to amend and vote on a number of bills. Are Josh Brighter as a special session? That happens before he takes office. Republicans do kind of classic power grab Wisconsin's Republican controlled. Legislature passed a series of bills late Wednesday night. That would limit the powers of incoming Democratic governor. Tony Day pass a number of bills that limit the power of the incoming Democratic governor and take away things that were available to his Republican predecessor bills would put lawmakers in charge of litigation which would effectively block incoming Democratic governor Tony Evers and the Democratic Attorney General elect from withdrawing the state from a lawsuit to overturn obamacare. So either is not. Have the power to make key appointments and another bill would require the governor to get permission from the legislature to ban. Guns Everts would not have the power to regulate guns in the same way that existed for his predecessor the also limited early voting which is a tool of access to the ballot box. That sometimes helped Democrats because more people in bigger areas can get to the polls. These are all really nakedly. Partisan Republicans didn't really even try to hide it. We don't want to usurp his power. That's never been our goal. Our goal is just to guarantee that we have an opportunity to sit at the table negotiate and do it fairly. It puts us on an equal playing field as the legislature. And I think that's a positive step for the state of Wisconsin so that is the political backdrop. You're saying for this current battle over how to hold a primary in the middle of a pandemic. Yeah it is that sense of affirmation the sense of rightness that Republicans enter into everts administration with and allows them to openly flout. The typical means a political pressure that the governor tries to put on them around the election. The legislature came in they gavel. Ben For about ten seconds gavel. `Bout and they moved on. They said that was not a serious proposal. Instead the time for the proposals like that whereas several weeks ago when the crisis began so what happens after that special session that minute long special session about the election. Well there's been a significant amount of legal legislation that has surrounded all of this political action so much going on here at the state capital today. Let's break down and give you a brief summary of what happened today. 'cause it's been a wild day politically. There was a court ruling. That basically affirmed that the Republicans probably have control over a win. The election should be held the ruling expanded access to absentee-voter Republicans appealed that straight to the US Supreme Court and Monday started with Governor Eve irs issuing executive order pushing back the spring election from tomorrow to June ninth morning governor. Tony Iverson issued an executive order to postpone tomorrow's election due to Cova one thousand nine concerns. The bottom line is that I have an obligation to keep people safe. The governor makes his most drastic step unilaterally postponing Tuesday's election until June Claiming he asked the emergency powers to do so. This is a front the Republicans Republican legislators mounted a legal challenge immediately and they immediately initiate emergency legislation. Going straight to the Wisconsin Supreme Court saying the governor does not have the right to do this and just about an hour ago. The State Supreme Court issued its ruling saying that indeed. The election will happen tomorrow. The court agree with them ruling just hours later that the governor did not have the power to postpone the Tuesday primary meaning. The election will go on in person today. You know said I'm struck by the fact that earlier on you told us the Democrats Republicans in the state they had basically been on the same page about this primary until the virus gets worse and the governor advocates for a different kind of voting system through absentee ballots and then it all breaks down and Republicans are attempting at every turn to block him now in court. And how do you explain that I mean how do Republicans in the state legislature explained Republican County chairs and folks in the state legislature? Say a couple of things. The first is at their position has changed. The doctor. Governor didn't have the power then and they don't think he has the power now to change. How the election is run. The other point is that they see Wisconsin again as a microcosm of the conservative fight. That could happen largely and what could be a new reality of how American elections are run in this pandemic era and in that view dramatically expanding the electorate in these ways are not something that Republicans are all that keen on because what they're worried about is an election in which people who may not have participated or may not have come out all of a sudden have the opportunity to do so and to cast a ballot and that kind of changes the center of power within the state. What do you mean if people participate in different numbers in bigger numbers if it changes the type of people who want to participate in the spring election? That's not necessarily always seen the biggest turnout that changes who can win and who has benefited from the systems in the past and who might benefit if they were to change along the lines of what Governor Devers is asking for. It's hard to say exactly because we're talking about an unprecedented situation. But we do know that the people who are typically benefited from early voting from early registration from online registration or vote by mail where people usually don't participate in the process. Younger voters minority voters people that lean democratic and just in the ways that Republicans Limited early voting and that special session. They had after evert is one. It's the same thought process that with more people get involved when people who typically sit out get involved that helps Democrats Do Democrats acknowledge that an absentee balloting system that is suddenly much more widespread than it has been in the past would be advantageous to them in Wisconsin? They principally try to appeal to voters using Small d democratic ideals the General Basic American principle that everyone should be given the easiest access to vote. They've tried to appeal. The people do public health measures noting. How unsafe it is for people to gather at Paul's but when you ask folks in democratic circles they know that win the electorate expanse particularly in national and statewide elections. That's usually good news for Democrats It's interesting this is not just a debate about how to vote in a pandemic although clearly. That's what's driving a lot of this but in the background from what you're saying is this other question which is whether the systems needed to vote during a pandemic may fundamentally change who votes how many people vote and which party wins exactly is not just about public health. This is about access to power and the kind of most basic fundamental principles of democracy. If the system that we have been traditionally used to can't hold what replaces it and we seem real resistance to that in this state and we may see that resistance all across the country. Why would you say that? Because it's very tempting to see this story as an anomaly right in that. The Governor of Wisconsin waited a very long time to try to postpone the state's primary perhaps too long and the state legislature is this hyper partisan conservative activist body. That is trying to use. Its power for political advantage. So all those factors would seem to make Wisconsin a bit of an outlier. What may seem like an anomaly. Right now might actually just be pacesetter and this could be a preview as to what comes for state after state.