A lead Milwaukee elections official has been officially fired over alleged fraud it what many think could have been a gambit to highlight just how easy fake military ballots can be smuggled through Wisconsin, explained local authorities.
44-year-old Kimberly Zapata, was removed from her role as deputy director of the city’s Election Commission in the wake of allegedly sending entirely unsolicited military ballots to the home of a state representative. Milwaukee Mayor Cavalier Johnson stated that the ordeal is still under investigation but may have actually been a possible bid to highlight the ease in which the current election system could be exploited.
“This has every appearance of being an egregious blatant violation of trust [and] this matter is now in the hands of law enforcement,” stated Johnson, as reported by WISN.
“It does not matter to me that the alleged crime did not take place at work,” he went on. “It does not matter to me that the city of Milwaukee ballots were not a part of this, nor does it matter that there was no attempt to vote illegally or tamper with any election results.”
This most recent bought of drama takes place just a week prior to the voters of Wisconsin officially heading to the polls for the midterm elections in which they will be selecting a senator and a governor, along with various other roles. Zapata could be issued a serious felony charge of malfeasance in office and a lighter misdemeanor charge of illegally requesting a ballot, explained a source close to the matter to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
Michael Maistelman, the legal representation for Zapata, outright declined to speak about the issue or answer any questions regarding his client’s alleged actions.
“We will litigate this in the courtroom, not the media,” explained Maistelman to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.
This insane event was made public earlier this week as state Rep. Janel Brandtjen highlighted via social media a series of three military absentee ballots mailed to her home on the 27th of October. Brandtjen explained that the ballots seemed to have been sent out from clerks situated in Menomonee Falls, South Milwaukee and Shorewood and were all marked as for a fictitious “holly” sporting three totally different last names.
As a Republican and the chair of the Assembly Elections Committee, Brandtjen expressed that she also thinks that someone, which could possibly have been Zapata, was attempting to make a point.
“I believe someone was trying to point out how easy it is to get military ballots in Wisconsin,” she explained. “Registration for military ballots is not required, so a fictitious name and birthdate is all that is required to obtain a military ballot online.”
As explained by State law, voters marked as the military are not made to register for voting and do not need to show a photo ID or any other identification. Claire Woodall-Vogg, the Milwaukee Election Commission chief, stated that Zapata was most likely attempting to show Brandtjen a weak point within the system.
“It’s my belief that she was pointing out that you can go onto the public system, make up a person and request a ballot,” concluded Woodall-Vogg.