One Town of Waukesha polling place reported 50% turnout by noon

WAUKESHA — Wisconsin’s recall election drew a high voter turnout throughout the state, especially in places like Waukesha County. The role of Waukesha County Clerk Kathy Nickolaus generated more controversy Tuesday, as voters took to the polls.

At one Town of Waukesha polling place Tuesday, just over 50% of the registered voters had cast ballots before the noon hour! Town Clerk Jamie Salentine said there was a very long line outside the polling place at 6:30 Tuesday morning — a half-hour before the polls opened.

Poll officials said they were ready.

“We set it up as if it were presidential. We changed the whole layout out here for it to flow more,” Salentine said.

Officials had someone outside, making sure traffic flowed smoothly Tuesday.

Meanwhile, concerns about a smooth election prompted some citizens to send an emailed letter to Waukesha County Executive Dan Vrakas Monday. The group asked for a restraining order, banning County Clerk Nickolaus from the balloting process as a means of ensuring integrity and credibility.

Past snafus by Nickolaus include failing to include all of Brookfield’s voter in a preliminary total in 2011 until days later. That error changed the outcome of the Prosser/Kloppenberg Supreme Court election.

During April’s presidential primary election, workers had to sift through yards of paper tapes hanging on walls at the Clerk’s Office.

“I asked her to relinquish her responsibility for the upcoming recalls. She did that. That was the right decision,” Vrakas said.

Nickolaus was seen in her office during the recall primary election on May 8th, seemingly reviewing election numbers after her deputy clerk was given the authority to oversee the primary and general recall elections.

“The truth of the matter is, while she may have handed out a piece of paper with some numbers on it, she did not and was not involved in tabulating those numbers,” Vrakas said.

The group that sent the email says they still have concerns about Nickolaus but Vrakas said he believes he’s addressed the concerns.

Vrakas said 37 different municipalities would initially handle the results — electronically reporting them to the state, and then faxing the results to the County.

Nickolaus was in her Waukesha County office on Tuesday, but FOX6 News is told she was not overseeing anything.

Nickolaus did not return FOX6 News’ calls or emails for comment on this story.

Voters can call the Wisconsin Election Protection Hotline at 1-866-OUR-VOTE to report problems, ask attorneys questions or get help to protect their right to vote.

CLICK HERE for more information on voting and the recall election via the GAB’s website.

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