RNC Applauds Wisconsin GOP’s Success In Carving Path For More Election Denialism In 2024

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GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN - APRIL 02: Guests attend a rally hosted by former President Donald Trump on April 02, 2024 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. At the rally, Trump spoke next to an empty lectern on the stage and challenge... GREEN BAY, WISCONSIN - APRIL 02: Guests attend a rally hosted by former President Donald Trump on April 02, 2024 in Green Bay, Wisconsin. At the rally, Trump spoke next to an empty lectern on the stage and challenged President Joe Biden to debate him. The Wisconsin primary is being held today. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images) MORE LESS
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The Republican National Committee was quick to make it known that it invested resources in ensuring the Wisconsin primary election on Tuesday evening went smoothly — so that voters could end up passing a referendum that is all but certain to make administering elections in the battleground state even harder and more confusing than it has been in the past.

“Wisconsin voters have made it clear that they do not want Zuckerbucks or dark-money interests influencing their local elections. The RNC and RPW were proud to help drive this crucial victory and ensure strong poll-watching coverage across Wisconsin to ensure a transparent voting process,” the new Trump-approved RNC Chair Michael Whatley said in a statement emailed to TPM Wednesday. “This win emphasizes that Americans support basic election integrity safeguards in battleground states like Wisconsin and around the country.”

Below the statement from the new chairman, the email included a list of the ways in which the RNC and the Republican Party Of Wisconsin worked to smooth the passage of both of the constitutional amendments — one crafted in response to the outlandish “Zuckerbucks” conspiracy theory and a second, extraordinarily vague measure that will limit who can perform election-related tasks in the state — which included being present at polling places around the state.

“The RNC’s election integrity team was on the ground for the voting in Wisconsin and filled 1,100 election observer shifts across the state to ensure transparency at the polls for the voting on Questions 1 and 2,” the email said. “RNC attorneys also manned an election integrity war room which resolved nearly 60 reported poll issues to ensure voter access at the ballot box.”

As my colleague Khaya Himmelman reports here, the passage of the referendum that will amend the state constitution to vaguely restrict election administration to certain yet unclear types of election officials is similar to GOP efforts after the 2020 election to confuse voting rights groups out of participating in various election-related activities, like helping people register to vote, and may bar groups from helping election administrators print ballots.

The irony in the RNC taking advantage of legal opportunities to ensure smooth election operations so that voters could approve a ballot measure that now makes it unclear who is allowed to participate in election administration and work the polls in Wisconsin is not lost on me. But the efforts come as the RNC also makes it internally clear that election denialism will be a core pillar of the group’s 2024 work.

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