“The End of Voter Registration Drives” (1/5/2017) describes the most recent voter suppression legislation, which eliminates special registration deputies (SRDs), effective this month.
Reid Magney, spokesperson for the Wisconsin Elections Commission, is quoted as saying, “I don’t have figures, but [registration deputies] make up a relatively small percentage of voter registrations.” Well, here are some figures that were provided to me about two years ago by Brian Bell, a former state elections staff member who is now head of the state Ethics Commission. In 2008, there were 140,561 approved voter applications with SRDs listed as the source. In 2012, there were 64,499.
Why the 54% drop between 2008 and 2012? Probably because the Legislature eliminated statewide SRDs in 2011. Since then, if you were trained and appointed by a municipal clerk, you could only register voters who lived in that municipality. Even these lowered numbers were apparently too much for the voter suppressors. You can see details on the voter suppression legislation since 2011 at fairelectionswi.com/supression.htm.
Paul Malischke (via email)
I enjoyed reading the review of the new Food Fight restaurant, Everly (“Enlightened Eating,” 1/5/2017).
Yet, in all the enlightenment and descriptive adjectives about the various food tasted, there was no mention of the executive chef, Scott Harrell, or sous chef Matthew Austin.
Certainly the culinary team behind all the flavor, textures and direction of this innovative menu deserve recognition for their skill, hard work and craft.
Patti Glasz (via email)
“Making a Scene” (12/8/2016) is an interesting, wonderfully written and highly readable article about Johannes Wallmann.
Johannes is certainly a Renaissance man in the truest sense of the word. A German-born, Canada-raised UW-Madison School of Music professor who is a jazz pianist and a hockey team captain is bound to catch anyone’s attention. However, it was author Jane Burns’ writing style that sealed the deal.
Ron Johnson (via email)
An article in the Jan. 5 issue, “The End of Voter Registration Drives,” misattributed a quote: “So if you’re trying to do a door-to-door registration drive and you find someone without [the right] ID, you’re going to have to pull a Xerox machine out of your back pocket.” It was said by Paul Malischke. The article also incorrectly stated that an estimated 300,000 people were unable to vote in the November election because of voter ID requirements. That estimate was from 2014.