Wanggaard will not appeal the recall recount

Posted on: 9:15 am, July 10, 2012, by , updated on: 10:04pm, July 10, 2012

RACINE — Van Wanggaard will not appear the recall election recount in Racine County. He had until Tuesday, July 10th to file that appeal.

In a statement released on Tuesday morning, Wanggaard said, “Unfortunately, I only have five days from the end of the recount to develop a case to challenge the count of the election. This is not enough time to fully investigate the mountains of evidence and answer the questions that have arisen. This is especially true given the surprising lack of cooperation we have received from city officials in our requests. The investigation into irregularities does not stop today.”

He added, “Even if I were to challenge and win in Racine County court, an appeal to that challenge would be heard in the Madison’s Court of Appeals. A challenge would also be extremely costly to taxpayers, who have already been forced to waste $20 million on the recall election.”

Now, Democrat John Lehman can officially say he’ll represent the 21st District in the Wisconsin State Senate.

Wanggaard said he will continue to look into election day problems, such as missing same-day voter registration signatures and opened ballot bags.

“Just because we’re not going to challenge the tally at this point and allow this process to go forward, we’re gonna continue to work on the issues that arose out of the recount because this is potentially systemic with the whole process here,” Wanggaard said.

Speaking to reporters outside his home Tuesday, Lehman said he supports what Wanggaard is doing.

“I’m very happy to have anyone do an investigation of these elections. I think both parties -  Democrat and Republican – want to see fair and impartial elections. I believe that’s what happened in Racine,” Lehman said.

Wanggaard said there are plenty of reasons to question whether ballot-handling in Racine really was fair and impartial, but also said five days was not enough time to find clear proof of fraud.

“In some areas, there was not integrity with the ballot process or the ballot security, and we brought those issues forward. There’s a lot of circumstantial evidence, a lot of smoke but we don’t have a gun yet,” Wanggaard said.

Lehman said an ongoing investigation won’t affect his ability to govern. Wanggaard said what happened in Racine demonstrates the need for a voter ID requirement in the state.

“We’re gonna push for Voter ID because I think that would eliminate a lot of these issues right off the bat,” Wanggaard said.

Wanggaard said he will run again in 2013. Lehman said that doesn’t surprise him, since the redrawn district favors Republicans.

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