Ramthun Already Pulling Two Other Candidates for Governor Further Right in Eliminating Election Independence

By Julian Emerson
February 15, 2022

Kleefisch and Nicholson suggest control should be given to partisan politicians instead of a state Elections Commission.

Two days after Rep. Tim Ramthun announced a campaign for governor based entirely on overturning Wisconsin’s 2020 presidential election results, the two Republicans who were already in the race proposed new plans to shift election oversight from the bipartisan Wisconsin Elections Commission (WEC) to partisan politicians serving in elected offices. 

Former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch released a plan Monday that would create a new Office of Election Integrity & Public Trust within the state Department of Justice (DOJ). Her proposal would give the state Attorney General the power to oversee election audits, have oversight of voting violations, and make it easier for the public to access the list of state voters. 

Another Republican gubernatorial candidate, US Marine veteran Kevin Nicholson, attacked the Kleefisch proposal as “an attempt to grab headlines without solving the problem.” His statement said the plan is “creating another bureaucracy—housed in a DOJ potentially run by a Democrat Attorney General.” He then said he would abolish the WEC and transfer its powers instead to the Secretary of State’s office.

That office is also currently held by a Democrat.

The proposals from Kleefisch and Nicholson come amid repeated unfounded claims of voter fraud in the November 2020 election. Ramthun (R-Campbellsport) is among the most vocal advocates for decertifying Wisconsin’s 10 electoral college votes that were cast for Joe Biden after he defeated Donald Trump for the presidency in Wisconsin by about 20,000 votes. Trump allies have endorsed Ramthun.


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