MILWAUKEE -- Friday is the last day for early voting in Milwaukee before Tuesday's primary election. It's the first election since Wisconsin's Voter ID Law took effect, and government and community leaders are using this election to push the new requirements.
Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett has already cast his spring ballot. Barrett took part in the two-week absentee voting period prior to Tuesday's actual primary day. "I want people to understand what the new law is, so they can have their voice heard in our democracy," Barrett said.
Milwaukee's Election Commission Executive Director says the February 6th to February 17th early voting period has been a good test of the law. "Based on what we're hearing and seeing, the word has gotten out and I think people are going to be well-prepared for Election Day," Election Commission Executive Director Sue Edman said.
For Wisconsinites who still don't have a proper ID for voting under the requirements of the new law, help seems to be everywhere. For current Milwaukee County residents who were born in the county, the Milwaukee County Register of Deeds has funding to give away 5,000 birth certificates to those who cannot afford them. So far, only 130 people have taken the offer. "They're all important, but when the November election approaches, I would hope that more people participate that need their record," Milwaukee County Register of Deeds John LaFave said.
CLICK HERE to print off a form to request a free birth certificate needed to obtain an ID card for the purpose of voting.
Sunday, religious leaders throughout the city will do their own voter ID check. When they find a parishioner without the proper ID, Milwaukee Inner-City Congregations Allied for Hope, or MICAH, will take the parishioners to a DMV. "We're going to make sure that every congregation in this city polls their people about voter ID," Willie Brisco said.
With Election Day on Tuesday, there is not enough time to get a physical ID that meets voting requirements. However, DMVs will give you a paper copy the same day that can be used at the polls.