UPDATE: GAB agrees to reject outside petition reviews - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

UPDATE: GAB agrees to reject outside petition reviews


MADISON (WKOW) --  The Tea Party group "Verify The Recall" claims to have 11,000 volunteers across Wisconsin examining petitions for fraud.

But, on Tuesday, the Government Accountability Board agreed it will not accept challenges from such third party groups.

"You don't weigh the cheers and the boos on one side to evaluate what method you're gonna use, and you follow what the law has been laid out for you beforehand," explained GAB Executive Director Kevin Kennedy.  "You don't change those rules in the middle of the process."

Under Wisconsin law, the board may only consider petition challenges from the office holder being recalled or their representatives, such as a political party.

"Just like in a court, you don't allow people to just walk in and say to the court, 'I've got additional evidence,' said Kennedy. "You've got to have certain procedures in place for that."

"We are organized as a 501 c 4 organization and as such, we are not allowed to coordinate our activities with any elected officials or candidates for office," said Ross Brown of Verify The Recall.

Brown says that will shut his group out of the process completely.

But, Kevin Kennedy said that claim isn't completely accurate.

"Part of what's going on is an open solicitation to the public by office holders, through telephone calls, mailings and postings on their web sites," said Kennedy.

Kennedy said that means any individual can take the information that "Verify The Recall" makes public and submit it to the officials being recalled.

"We'll be announcing all of our findings publicly," responded Brown. "What any individual or candidate decides to do with those I can't comment on them, because that's up to them."

But Brown admitted, he may not quit here.

"I think at this point all options are on the table," said Brown. "We're not ruling out anything, including taking this to court."

That would be the second court case filed against the GAB in this recall process.

In the first, a judge ruled the board must strike any obviously fake signatures such as Mickey Mouse.

And despite an Appeals Court decision to vacate that ruling, the GAB has to abide by it for at least 31 more days.

That is the amount of time the Republican Party has to appeal that reversal to the Wisconsin Supreme Court. 

Also on Tuesday, the GAB gave final approval for technical school student ID's to be used as a legal form of voter identification.


MADISON (WKOW) -- Wisconsin's elections board has agreed not to accept independent reviews of recall petitions done by anyone other than Gov. Scott Walker and other targeted lawmakers and those who circulated the petitions.

On Tuesday, the Government Accountability Board agreed to reject an offer made by a pair of tea party groups offering to turn over their own review of the estimated 1 million signatures submitted on the Walker recall petitions.

Board director Kevin Kennedy says there is no process in place for accepting information from outside groups and individuals.

The four targeted state senators have until Thursday to challenge signatures. Walker's challenges are due February 27 and Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch has until March 5.

The GAB has until March 19 to verify all of the petitions.


MADISON (WKOW) -- The Government Accountability Board meets Tuesday morning to talk about the latest developments related to possible recall elections for the governor and five others.

Governor Scott Walker, Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch and four Republican state senators were all recalled. About a million signatures were collected to recall Walker. Volunteers have been working to verify the petitions.

Last week, 27 News interviewed a domestic violence victim we called "Jane," who was concerned when her name and address was made public when the recall petitions were posted online."Jane" will speak in front of the GAB Tuesday.

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