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Voter ID laws confusing, poll workers getting training


MADISON, WI (WTAQ) - State officials say they’ve started training poll workers on the requirement that voters show photo I-D’s at the polls starting in February.

Reid Magney of the Government Accountability Board said his agency welcomed a study by the League of Women Voters.

It showed widespread confusion about the law during this summer’s Senate recall contests. Magney says the I.D. requirement is the biggest change in Wisconsin voting laws since 18-year-olds were given the right to vote in 1971. He encouraged people to share their observations with the Accountability Board.

League director Andrea Kaminski says it’s clear that municipal clerks will need to hire more poll workers – provide more training – post clearer signs about the law – and plan for breakdowns. Voters must also sign poll books – and Kaminski said it would help if each polling place had two books instead of one so the lines wouldn’t be as long.

Also, the League of Women Voters said mistakes were made at a number of polling places. For example, a quarter of the polls it checked were inconsistent in asking voters to show I-D’s voluntarily – even though they’re not required to do so until February.

Also, voters in at least four places were told they couldn’t vote next year if their driver’s licenses are expired. That’s wrong, because the law allows voters to use expired licenses as far back as November of last year.