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Wisconsin Assembly leaders resist impeachment vote on Wolfe, despite pressure from Trump

man speaking into microphone
WisconsinEye screen capture
Assembly Speaker Robin Vos speaks during a state Capitol news conference on November 7, 2023.

So far, state Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R-Racine County) has blocked an effort by members of his own party to have the Assembly vote on impeaching Wisconsin Elections Administrator Meagan Wolfe.

This week, former President Donald Trump joined those pressuring Vos to allow an impeachment vote. But Vos told reporters Tuesday that most other Wisconsin GOP lawmakers don't want to take up such a resolution.

"We had a brief discussion about it today in caucus. I think that we are nowhere near a consensus. But, I can't predict what's going to happen in the future. But I think it is unlikely that it's going to come up anytime soon," Vos said.

Vos said rather than debate claims made in articles of impeachment filed against Wolfe — claims largely shown to be false, or that Vos said, Republicans have already addressed — it's time for the GOP to look ahead.

Meagan Wolfe, Elections Administrator of the Wisconsin Elections Commission (WEC).
Meagan Wolfe, Elections Administrator of the Wisconsin Elections Commission (WEC).

"We need to move on. The election in 2024 should not be about what occurred in 2020. We had an election in 2022 that went fairly well. There weren't a lot of issues that were brought up. We had Ron Johnson reelected to the U.S. Senate. So, we need to move forward and talk about issues that matter to most Wisconsinites, and that is not, for most Wisconsinites, obsessing about Meagan Wolfe," Vos said.

A Dane County judge has ruled Wolfe can keep her elections job, despite state Senate attempts to remove her, while a lawsuit supporting her is heard in a Madison court.

Vos only agreed to send an impeachment resolution to an Assembly committee last week, after a conservative-backed TV ad threatened the speaker's political future.

UW-Milwaukee political scientist Kathleen Dolan says Vos isn't the only GOP politician in the U.S. facing reprisals for not doing more to help Trump's false claim of winning in 2020. Dolan says Vos is just the latest to make a calculation.

"I think he might be sensing there are more people who would value the logical path than the illogical one. And maybe he's making a calculation that he actually doesn't pay as much of a price by pursuing the correct path on this, the truthful path on this," Dolan tells WUWM.

Vos cannot be recalled until at least next spring. If he runs for reelection, any GOP primary would take place in August.

Editor’s note: A portion of the audio is from WisconsinEye.

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