Among the many voted changes, straight ticket voting is now banned
While the photo ID provision of the 2011 election reform law has been struck down, there are other parts other parts of the law that will go into effect and remain unknown to many Wisconsin residents.
From voter registration changes to new voting rules, for many November 6 may be a different voting experience than in the past, particularly if registering to vote with a new name or address.
Voter registration corroboration banned
If you don’t have an acceptable document that shows your name and address, you can no longer establish residency in a ward by having a registered voter vouch for you.
- What to do: Don’t wait until the last minute to dig up a document or set up a new bank account at your new address or under your new name after a marriage or divorce. You can provide a current, valid Wisconsin driver’s license or other official documents including utility bills and bank statements. For a full list: gab.wi.gov/node/2550
- No hard copy required: Establish your residence by showing a clerk or poll worker an acceptable document displayed on a computer or smartphone screen. An internet connection will not be provided.
- No home: Homeless people must obtain a letter from a social service agency specifying a shelter or other location, such as a park bench, as their residence.
New voting rules
- Where you vote: You are expected to vote in the ward where you lived on Oct. 9 — that is, 28 days before the election instead of 10 days under the old law.
- Sign on the line: You must sign a poll book when voting at the polls, unless you are handicapped.
- Ward boundary changes: Your voting district and polling place may have changed. (Go to myvote.wi.gov to check.)
- Straight ticket option gone: No straight party ticket voting. Choose a candidate race by race.
- Voter ID in limbo: You don’t need to show ID to vote, even though the 2011 law required it. A court overturned the requirement after one election. More appeals are pending.