MacIver News Service | March 12, 2014[Madison, Wisc…] The state Senate passed Senate Bill 324 on Wednesday morning after hours of debate on Tuesday afternoon and night. The bill would create uniform times for early in-person absentee voting across the state. Democrats were quick to oppose the bill with claims that it would suppress votes, but Republicans argued the bill was about creating fairness in elections. The bill passed 17-16 with Sen. Dale Schultz (R-Richland Center) joining the minority.
The Senate adopted an amendment to the bill on Tuesday from by Sen. Mike Ellis (R-Neenah) and introduced by Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R-Juneau) that would apply the law statewide and create an appropriation to pay 50 percent of costs for hiring additional staff to handle early in-person absentee voting in the the two weeks prior to the election.