New bill could legalize taking selfies with election ballotsSubmitted: 01/22/2020
Maya Reese
Maya Reese

New bill could legalize taking selfies with election ballots
RHINELANDER - Taking a selfie to post on social media is usually seen as a harmless act.

But, if a Wisconsin resident decides to take a selfie in a voting booth, with a filled election ballot, that could mean a felony charge. A new bill is working to change that.

Wisconsin is one of 18 states that currently prohibit selfies in the election booths. On Tuesday, the Wisconsin State Senate approved a bill that would allow Wisconsin voters to legally take photos of themselves while holding their marked election ballot.

Not everyone's happy about it.

Tracy Hartman represents Oneida County in the Wisconsin County Clerk Association. She says they're concerned ballot selfies can be used by groups or companies to make sure people are voting the way they want. 

"Their employers would be able to use that against them," said Hartman. "They would be able to use it force them to either vote a certain way or do something at work."

Hartman says she's worried about this bill affecting the privacy of other voters.

"If somebody is taking a selfie of themselves with their ballot...they're going to get someone else in their picture," said Hartman. "When you're going to vote that's a private thing and you may not want your picture taken by someone else."

The measure now goes to the Wisconsin State Assembly.  If it passes there, it would need Governor Evers' signature for approval.

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