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Wisconsin Supreme Court nixes move to ban ballot drop boxes

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Wisconsin Supreme Court has rejected a move to ban absentee ballot drop boxes.

Conservative businessman Jere Fabick petitioned the Supreme Court in March to ban the use of ballot drop boxes and prohibit elections officials from filling in missing addresses of witnesses on absentee ballot envelopes. He also sought to limit who can return absentee ballots on behalf of voters.

While the Supreme Court concluded Friday that the lawsuit put forward important questions, the majority said it wouldn’t take the case because the issues were not “cleanly presented,” and that the legal standards that should guide the justices were not clear.


As with other recent politically tinged cases, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported, this one was decided 4-3 by the court’s liberals and Justice Brian Hagedorn, who was elected in 2019 with Republican support.

“While this court must not shrink back from deciding challenging or politically fraught questions properly before us, neither should we be eager to insert ourselves at the expense of time-tested judicial norms,” the majority wrote in its unsigned opinion.

In dissent, Justice Patience Roggensack wrote that the majority was avoiding urgent issues.

“They are issues that cry for judicial resolution by the Wisconsin Supreme Court before the 2022 elections begin,” she wrote.