The Wisconsin Supreme Court justices who stopped thousands of voters from casting absentee ballots had no problem doing so themselves.
Thanks to last-minute action by Gov. Tony Evers (D) and a holdout from Wisconsin's GOP-held state legislature, the state's Supreme Court was left to determine whether Wisconsin's presidential primary could be delayed amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The justices voted 4-2 in favor of overturning Evers' delay — and every one of them had already voted absentee themselves, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports.
Wisconsin's state legislature had the sole power to delay the state's primary and Supreme Court election, which went off with many, many hitches last week. Still, some Democrats blamed Evers for not acting sooner and more forcefully to get the election delayed so the state could send vote-by-mail ballots to everyone and allow time for people to return those ballots. Evers eventually issued an executive order to delay the election, which the state Supreme Court quickly overturned. The U.S. Supreme Court then solidified the state court's decision.
But when the Wisconsin Supreme Court took up the election question, their own voting rights weren't at stake. That's because every judge already had cast absentee ballots, either by voting early or mailing them in (conservative Justice Daniel Kelly didn't participate because he was on the ballot), per the Journal Sentinel. "They are luckier than the thousands of others who tried to do the same and were unable to," state Sen. Chris Larson pointed out, seeing as many Wisconsinites ended up waiting upwards of three hours in socially distanced lines to vote or got their mail-in ballots too late to submit them.