MADISON, Wis. / (Press Release) -- Last week, the non-partisan Legislative Audit Bureau (LAB) released their comprehensive audit of the November 2020 election and election administration in Wisconsin. After a thorough review and conversations with colleagues, Senate Majority Leader Devin LeMahieu (R-Oostburg), Senate President Chris Kapenga (R-Delafield), and Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dan Feyen (R-Fond du Lac) issued the following statement:
Since the start of this session, the State Senate resolved to take a deliberate and evidence-based approach to addressing allegations of problems within election administration in Wisconsin. In addition to passing numerous election reforms which were vetoed by Governor Evers, the Joint Legislative Audit Committee authorized a comprehensive audit of the results and administration of the November 2020 election in February of this year.
The nonpartisan auditors at the LAB have been thoroughly investigating allegations of fraud, the use of electronic voting machines, the processing of absentee ballots, voter registration data, complaints from individual voters, state and local election officials’ compliance with state law, and any other irregularities which arose out of their investigation.
The audit findings released on October 21st paint a grim picture of the Wisconsin Election Commission (WEC) and their careless administration of election law in Wisconsin. The audit shows numerous failures within WEC which undermined the free, fair, and transparent elections Wisconsinites deserve.
“When a state agency refuses to follow the law, especially one overseeing our elections, it should concern every Wisconsinite regardless of party,” said Majority Leader LeMahieu. “We will assess the full impact of WEC’s deficiencies and determine the best course of action for the future of election administration given the now documented failures of the current administration and staff.”
In addition to pursuing the LAB’s recommendations for legislative action, Senate Leadership will authorize the Senate Committee on Elections, Election Process Reform and Ethics to conduct an additional investigation relating to the findings of the audit including the City of Madison’s refusal to provide documents and ballots to the LAB in the course of their investigation.
“I was disappointed to see that an elected official tasked with the administration of fair and transparent elections would refuse their duty to provide requested information necessary to prove they did their job adequately,” said Senate President, Chris Kapenga. “That is unacceptable.”
These actions, based on findings of the audit, are part of the Senate’s deliberate, on-going efforts to restore full faith and confidence in the administration and results of our elections in Wisconsin.