Evers: Wisconsin National Guard to serve as poll workers in April 7 election

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MADISON, Wis. (WMTV) -- Facing a shortage of people who will man polling places across the state, members of the Wisconsin National Guard will be lending a hand by helping staff some locations.

In an amicus brief filed in U.S. District Court relating to a trio of federal lawsuits seeking to change the date of the spring election and presidential primary, Gov. Tony Evers noted he authorized Adjutant General Maj. Gen. Paul Knapp to activate the Guard "as necessary to support the state's response" to the public emergency caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

The filing, which lets a party weigh in on a case although it is not a party to it, seeks a 'middle path' between delaying the April 7 vote and keeping everything as-is.

It points out that 111 municipalities (6%) will not be able to staff a single polling place and another 126 will not be able to staff all of its usual locations - and those figures do not include the situation for 530 municipalities that did not respond to the status update.

It goes on to say that, in light of the situation, Evers plans to use National Guard soldiers to fill the gaps, but even with their assistance, many polling places will be shorthanded.

According to the briefing, the Guard is still determining how many people it can dedicate to such an assignment.