At least one group associated with President Donald Trump is pushing a long-shot proposal for Wisconsin to add voter ID laws and reduce absentee ballots available to minority voters.
The state Republican Party submitted a report earlier this year advocating for some of the changes, including making it harder for young voters to participate in elections.
The report, which is short on details and fails to identify a dollar amount, suggests that if Wisconsin made it harder for people to vote, participation would increase. Republican Gov. Scott Walker was involved in compiling the report, a source familiar with the proposal told CNN.
Scott County Clerk, Rejean Kloss, said she is “dismayed and disappointed” in the report and that it does not consider all points of view.
“The proposal presented makes a lot of assumptions, which fall completely against the facts from local elections offices and the integrity of our elections,” Kloss told CNN.
“Our county clerks oversee hundreds of days of elections annually and more than a thousand same-day registrations,” she added. “We’re nearly 9 million people strong and our quality of elections is second to none. One of the biggest facts is that we have historically low voter turnout for our communities. These proposals will push our voter turnout to extremely low numbers.”
CNN was not able to reach the Wisconsin Republican Party for comment.
It’s unclear what’s behind the group’s push.
The Wisconsin Elections Commission and the Government Accountability Board are both nonpartisan agencies which oversee elections in the state.
The report’s summary begins: “In 2016, President Donald Trump took Wisconsin by a tiny margin over Hillary Clinton, 50.3% to 49.4%. Despite this close result, the outcome was determined by smaller margins, according to various analyses of state and national polls and exit polls.”
The summary also includes a passage which notes: “Going into November 2016, it was widely expected that there would be a repeat of the 2012 presidential race in Wisconsin.”
The Wisconsin Republican Party submitted its proposal under public records requests, a source familiar with the proposal said.
There’s a comment section where a section reads: “The effort to limit voter turnout and participation as a deterrent to our desire to maintain and expand our individual and collective right to choose who shall be in office is a long standing idea that began in our country’s earliest days. In 1820, lawmakers introduced legislation to require electors to have identification, an antiquated idea.”
Others comment on its effort to conduct a study on reducing absentee ballots and identify which counties have more low-income residents and more voters without high school diplomas.
“It is interesting to note that the section about identifying which counties have more low-income residents and voters without high school diplomas is labeled as being related to ‘community issues,'” Lauren Peterson, with Make Election Fair, a voting rights campaign, said in a statement. “Instead of acknowledging how this type of legislation hampers low-income people’s access to the ballot box, it erroneously paints it as an effort to prevent voter fraud.”