Judge rejects attempt to block grants to 5 Wisconsin cities


MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A federal judge has declined to block more than $6 million in election grant money to five Wisconsin cities that a conservative group argued amounted to bribery designed to increase voter turnout in Democratic strongholds.

U.S. District Judge William Griesbach on Wednesday denied a request from the Wisconsin Voters Alliance and seven of its members, saying he found nothing in the law to prohibit the cities from being awarded the money.

The $6.3 million in funding was awarded to Green Bay, Kenosha, Madison, Milwaukee and Racine.

In July, when the City of Green Bay announced it would receive just over $1 million of the funding, Green Bay Mayor Eric Genrich said the money would go toward providing a safer voting experience.

“The coronavirus pandemic has provided a stress test for our democratic institutions, including our elections, and we know we must do better,” said Green Bay Mayor Eric Genrich.

Safety restrictions imposed during the Spring Primary in April caused long lines for Green Bay voters. The city was limited to just two polling places instead of its usual 16.

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