Gov. Walker Signs Ballot Tampering Prevention Bill into Law

MacIver News Service | April 3, 2014

[Madison, Wisc…] Gov. Scott Walker signed Senate Bill 264 on Wednesday, which aims to prevent ballot tampering by placing sole authority to secure the ballots with the chief inspector and one other inspector.

The law, authored by Sen. Mary Lazich (R-New Berlin) and Rep. Kathy Bernier (R-Chippewa Falls), requires the other inspector to have a different political affiliation than the chief inspector. The two inspectors are required to secure the ballots counted at their polling location in a ballot container with a seal or lock that would have to be broken to separate or tamper with the ballots.

This law comes after there were several discrepancies in previous elections over how ballots were handled. This was especially noted during the Racine recount in the recall election of former Sen. Van Wanggaard (R-Racine).

The MacIver Institute was on hand during the recount and documented many of the irregularities, including testimonials from individuals that did not know why ballot bags appeared to have been tampered with or who was responsible for the reopening and resealing of the bags.

Lazich said it was the Racine recount that provided evidence as to why this law was needed.

“The recent Racine recount demonstrated that all too often ballots are not secured in locked or sealed tamper-evident containers as the law requires,” Lazich said in a statement. “During the Racine recount many ballot bags were received opened and without a documented explanation. The job of securing ballot containers is important enough that it should be done only by the chief inspector and a poll worker of the opposite party. If there are problems, the bill assures accountability.”

Walker signed SB264 with a group of election related bills, which can be seen here.