(The Center Square) – Rescheduling next month's primary election will be no easy task.
Wisconsin's top Republican lawmakers say there's a long list of questions that must be answered first as well as problems that would need to be solved if a judge or Gov. Tony Evers ordered the April 7 election changed.
"We're 100,000 ballots into the election right now," Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, R-Juneau, said Wednesday. "If somebody would have made the case in early March, it might have changed things. But it seems the most reasonable approach right now is to continue with the way it's teed-up right now."
Democrats in Wisconsin and some local leaders are pushing to postpone the election or switch to vote-by-mail only because of the coronavirus.
Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, said it is not as simple as that.
"The terms of office conclude in April after the election. So we have to have new people or those who are in office get re-elected so they can make the decisions to keep our communities safe," Vos said of moving the election.
He also doesn't support changing the election to an all mail-in ballot option.
"It seems to me that would really undermine the election if we don't allow the process to continue as we are," Vos added.
Both Fitzgerald and Vos complimented Evers for his support of keeping the election on April 7 and keeping in-person voting open.
Eric Bott with Americans For Prosperity in Wisconsin said in-person voting is a must because early voting and absentee voting have already given some people a chance to cast a ballot.
"What we need to make sure happens is that all Wisconsin voters have an ample opportunity to vote, and have their vote is counted," Bott said. "The big concern that we have is that some voters have so far been given more opportunities."
Bott said voters in Milwaukee and Madison have had several days to vote early or absentee. He said other voters in Wisconsin have not had the chance.
Wisconsin's Election Commission is giving people more time to register to vote online. The Commission on Wednesday extended the online registration deadline until March 30.