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Wisconsin governor vetoes GOP-backed voting bill

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers

Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers has vetoed six voting restriction bills passed by the state’s GOP-led legislature, blocking restrictions on absentee ballots.

"I just vetoed several bills that would've made it harder for Wisconsinites to cast their ballots," Evers wrote on his Twitter.

"Over the past two years, we’ve watched Republicans around the country add more hurdles to voting and abuse their power to try to change election results they didn’t like. That's unacceptable. Politicians don't get to decide elections—that power remains with the people," he added.

The move by Evers was a serious blow to a nationwide effort by former US President Donald Trump and his Republican allies to make it harder for people to vote via absentee ballot.

On July 14, the Texas Senate approved a similar legislation to restrict absentee voting and forbid drive-through voting, which many believe were the Democrats’ trump card in the 2020 presidential election.

This came a day after 51 Democrats in the state’s lower house decamped to Washington to block passage of the bill by preventing a quorum that is necessary for a special session. They signaled that they would remain in Washington until the special session ends.

Meanwhile, US President Joe Biden has repeatedly criticized the bill as an “assault on democracy.”

“We’re facing the most significant test of our democracy since the Civil War,” Biden said after the passage of the bill. “I’m not saying this to alarm you, I’m saying this because you should be alarmed.”

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