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GOP attempts to undermine newly-elected Democrats aren’t going over well in Wisconsin and Michigan

"Respect our votes!"

Voters in Wisconsin and Michigan are protesting attempts to undermine newly elected Democrats by the lame duck state legislatures. (PHOTO CREDIT: Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Voters in Wisconsin and Michigan are protesting attempts to undermine newly elected Democrats by the lame duck state legislatures. (PHOTO CREDIT: Scott Olson/Getty Images)

People in Wisconsin and Michigan are protesting attempts by the lame duck state legislatures to undermine incoming Democratic governors elected in both states.

A group of activists snuck into a Republican press conference at the Wisconsin state capitol Monday, and chanted “Stop this coup!” and “Respect our votes!”

Protesters also gathered outside the hearing room where the Joint Finance Committee was meeting and chanted, “Respect our votes! Protect our votes!”

Later Monday night, protesters gathered outside with a light-up sign that read, “STOP THE LAME DUCK.”

More protests are scheduled for Tuesday in both Michigan and Wisconsin. In Michigan, protesters plan to gather at the capital in Lansing at 11:00 a.m. local time Tuesday, according to the state’s Women’s March chapter.

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Protests are planned in Madison, Wisconsin as well, starting at 10:30 a.m. local time, according to the Women’s March Wisconsin. “It’s been a long day for those who were fighting in Madison, and we’re heading back tomorrow,” the group tweeted Monday night.

The protests in Wisconsin come as the Republican state legislature seeks to limit early voting and move the 2020 presidential primary from March to April, an apparent effort to boost a conservative judge’s chances in the state Supreme Court election, The Washington Post noted Monday. Additionally, the legislature hopes to restrict incoming Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ ability to make certain appointments.

A Journal Sentinel report published Monday afternoon found that the moves would be incredibly costly for taxpayers, as shifting the primary could cost between $6.4 million and $6.8 million, and the inevitable, ongoing legal challenges to limited early voting could drag on for years.

There are similar attempts underway in Michigan, where the Republican state legislature aims to water down the authority of recently elected Gov. Gretchen Whitmer (D), the state attorney general, and the secretary of state on campaign finance and other legal issues. As The Detroit Free Press and the Post both noted, the governor-, attorney general-, secretary of state-elect are all women.

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The attempts to undermine the authority of these newly elected Democrats has drawn numerous comparisons to moves by the North Carolina state legislature two years ago, when Republicans used a lame duck session to strip then Gov.-elect Roy Cooper’s (D) power over cabinet appointments, gave the GOP power over the state board of elections, and worked to make the state’s judicial system more partisan.

Cooper has been caught in ongoing legal fights over the legislation for nearly two years.