by WorldTribune Staff, December 14, 2020
One of Joe Biden’s Wisconsin electors claimed she was “indefinitely confined” to her home due to coronavirus, but photos on her social media show her out and about campaigning, Milwaukee’s News/Talk 1130 radio reported.
Democrat state Sen. Patricia Schachtner was set to cast one of her state’s 10 electoral votes for Biden on Monday.
Schachtner claimed to the Wisconsin Elections Commission in a signed statement that she was “indefinitely confined” to her home due to covid and therefore needed a mail-in ballot.
The Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled on Monday that elections officials were wrong to claim that voters could use the status of “indefinitely confined” based on coronavirus. The decision also held that if voters falsely claimed they were indefinitely confined “their ballots would not count.”
The News/Talk 1130 report noted that Schachtner and her husband Joseph appear on the Wisconsin Elections Commission list of nearly 250,000 voters who signed a statement on their mail-in ballots that they were indefinitely confined to their homes “because of age, physical illness or infirmity” or if they are “disabled for an indefinite period.”
But “pictures posted on her Facebook page show her out and about campaigning and enjoying leisure time away from home,” the report noted.
On Aug. 5, Schachtner posted a picture of herself while speaking at the opening of a new Kwik Trip store. Nearly two months later, she posted a picture of herself and her husband while “enjoying all the wonderful natural resources that our state has to offer.”
Schachtner also posted pictures of herself awarding Ted’s Pizza Palace in Menominee with a Main Street Makeoever award and at an event with Wisconsin Treasurer Sarah Godlewski, the report noted.
Under Wisconsin law, a voter who concluded they are “confined” based on age, physical illness, or infirmity may request a ballot by mail and bypass Wisconsin’s voter ID law.
The government’s interpretation of Wisconsin’s indefinitely confined law was erroneous, the court said.
“A county clerk may not ‘declare’ that any elector is indefinitely confined due to a pandemic,” the court said, adding, “…the presence of a communicable disease such as COVID-19, in and of itself, does not entitle all electors [voters] in Wisconsin to obtain an absentee ballot.”
The court stated that lockdown orders do not meet the requirements under Wisconsin law to allow a voter to claim the status of “indefinitely confined.”
A false statement of indefinite confinement is a false statement to elections officials, and thus could be a Class I felony punishable by 3.5 years in prison and fines of up to $10,000.
Additionally, making “false statements in order to obtain an absentee ballot” is a misdemeanor punishable by a fine “of not more than $1,000, not more than six-months imprisonment or both.”