Wisconsin has had its share of legal wrangling over election laws, but the April 7 election may take the cake (I settled on that cliche because my birthday is Monday and I like cake). Four lawsuits have been filed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, which doesn't even count a previous lawsuit over purging voters or Dane County's sure-to-be-litigated declaration that absentee voters don't need an ID because they are indefinitely confined — which nonpartisan legislative lawyers on Friday deemed unlawful. Gov. Tony Evers and Republicans don't want to delay the election like other states have done, but municipalities are losing poll workers and some want an all-mail election with more time to count votes while a new lawsuit seeks postponement until Evers' "safer at home" order expires. It's the elect-apocalypse!
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- Sen. Fred Risser, the longest-serving lawmaker in American history, plans to retire after 64 years. In. American. History.
- Also, Rep. Chris Taylor is retiring after nine years, setting up an unusually robust November election landscape in a city accustomed to Rissering (defined as "serving in public office for a really long time").
- Kelly Meyerhofer reports on how regulators are trying to ease Wisconsin's nursing shortage amid the COVID-19 epidemic. Worth noting: Republicans rejected Gov. Tony Evers' $10 million request for more nursing educators in the state budget.
- Riley Vetterkind got an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the state Senate's plan for a possible virtual session in the coming weeks. It went much better than that meeting about the new law enforcement drone.
Send story tips and ideas to state/politics editor Matt DeFour at email@example.com or (608) 252-6144.
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