A top GOP legislator in Wisconsin will hire three retired police officers to investigate parts of the November 2020 general election, joining other Republicans across the nation who are skeptical of President Joe Biden’s victory.
Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said Wednesday he was giving the investigation, which will be overseen by an attorney, a broad mandate to take three months reviewing tips about the election and to follow up on ones that appear the most credible, according to an interview with Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
“Is there a whole lot of smoke, or is there actual fire? We just don’t know yet,” Vos said.
The Republican said he recognizes Biden scored a narrow victory in the state in November and claimed he is not attempting to change the results with the taxpayer-funded investigation. Biden defeated former President Donald Trump by about 20,600 votes in Wisconsin. Gov. Tony Evers certified the results in early December after a canvas and some county recounts.
Vos said he hopes investigators can clear up issues Republicans have raised in election fraud lawsuits that were rejected in court, such as how some of Wisconsin’s largest cities used $6 million in grants from private organizations to run their elections. The assembly speaker said another point of interest for the investigation may involve claims of double voting and reviews on how clerks fixed absentee ballot credentials.
At least one Democratic election official has raised concerns about the investigation in the state.
“I think it’s unfortunate that the Legislature is using its resources to investigate what has already been thoroughly investigated, and it is my hope that instead, they could work toward expanding opportunities and ease of voting for Wisconsin voters,” said Wisconsin Elections Commission Chairwoman Ann Jacobs.
GOP lawmakers have already begun legislative efforts to limit the use of private donations to run elections, passing a measure earlier this month that would largely prevent private groups from funding the costs.
Assembly Republicans passed a resolution in March authorizing an investigation, and they also ordered the state’s nonpartisan audit bureau to look into the election in February.
Vos said he hoped to have results of the investigation in the fall, near the same time that the audit is slated to complete, according to the Associated Press. He said the investigation by former officers would be a fair way to look into complaints Republicans have received.
Author : Kaelan Deese
Source : Washington Examiner : Top Wisconsin Republican hires former police officers to investigate 2020 general election