Wisconsin forged ahead with in-person voting Tuesday, after the conservative state Supreme Court on Monday overturned Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ order delaying the election. Following the advice of experts and the lead of other states, Evers had argued it was too dangerous for voters to venture out.
The move to forge ahead has prompted residents who had not already voted by mail to make tough choices: risk their health, or give up their right to vote. Poll workers, meanwhile, described their extraordinary attempts to keep workers and voters safe, but some question whether those will be enough.
Here are scenes and dispatches from Tuesday’s historic Election Day.
Editor’s note: This story was updated at 8:00 p.m. on Tuesday, April 7, 2020.
From Wisconsin Watch staff in the field:
Coburn Dukehart, digital and multimedia director, captured these scenes at polling locations in Door County, Wis.:
From associate director Lauren Fuhrmann:
From Bram Sable-Smith, WPR Mike Simonson Memorial Investigative Reporting Fellow:
Outside the polls:
BREAKING UPDATE: Additional cars are joining in and circling the city-county building in protest of the election. I’m seeing signs such as “stop the election, stop the spread” and “postpone the election, keep us safe.” @WISCTV_News3 pic.twitter.com/Os58VYja3m— Josh Spreiter (@JoshSpreiterTV) April 7, 2020
Rosie Redmond, 79, first in line (VERY long line) at Riverside High, MKE. Arrived 5:30 a.m. “I’m a voter. I do not miss voting.” pic.twitter.com/ORPijgGZR4— Dan Simmons (@MadDanWrites) April 7, 2020
Voters lined up at Washington High School on Sherman Blvd. one of only FIVE voting locations for elections.— Teran Powell (@Teran_Powell) April 7, 2020
This is actually 4 minutes worth of video I had to find a way to condense (because I didn’t use time lapse on my phone) pic.twitter.com/FeXAskQ6Ou
Voters at East High in Green Bay say they waited an hour and a half. It’s one of two polling locations open here today. It’s also starting to rain. pic.twitter.com/bLRZfmNe1x— Megan Hart (@meganmariehart) April 7, 2020
Once you’re inside:
Republican Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, who opposed Evers’ executive order to delay the election, reported to work at a polling place in his district Tuesday morning.
My polling place is only allowing 3 at a time to vote. You get your own pen to keep. Poll workers are gloved and masked behind glass. Tape on the floor marking where to stand and walk. I felt very safe. #WisconsinPandemicVoting #WisconsinPrimary pic.twitter.com/FhCy5zifKG— Julie (@JulieLvsPACKERS) April 7, 2020
The nonprofit Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism (wisconsinwatch.org) collaborates with Wisconsin Public Radio, PBS Wisconsin, other news media and the UW-Madison School of Journalism and Mass Communication. All works created, published, posted or disseminated by the Center do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of UW-Madison or any of its affiliates.