State election authorities are questioning whether a liberal group broke the law by offering both free food and free rides to vote in a hotly contested Senate recall election.
Although no formal complaint had reached the state Government Accountability Board by Monday afternoon, a spokesman for the agency said it would not be legal to combine free food and transportation to the polls in the same event - even if, as the organization contends, people could take the food without boarding the buses.
Local law enforcement authorities are reportedly looking into the get-out-the-vote "block parties."
Five such parties were sponsored by Wisconsin Jobs Now, a coalition of community and labor groups led by the Service Employees International Union. The coalition describes itself as a nonpartisan organization, although its blog posts have been highly critical of state Sen. Alberta Darling (R-River Hills), who is defending her seat against Rep. Sandy Pasch (D-Whitefish Bay) in the Aug. 9 recall vote.Oh, yes. SEIU is scrupulously "non-partisan." And the Twilight Zone shows were all true facts!
...Since last week, about 75 to 100 voters each day have been casting absentee ballots at City Hall, often arriving in groups, said Sue Edman, executive director of the city Election Commission.
State law prohibits anyone from offering a voter any inducement to vote or not vote. Veum said her group believed it was complying with the law because no one was required to take the rides or vote to get the food and prizes.
But "that's a distinction without a difference," said Reid Magney, spokesman for the accountability board. He said it was legal to offer rides to the polls, or free food at picnics to talk about issues, but not in the same event.Ms. Pasch states that 'it looks shady.'