482,000 de-registered voters in Wisconsin since 2016

Submitted by John on Sat, 09/01/2018 - 12:01
A river winding through the a Wisconsin forest with surrounded on either side with rocks and trees.

Since the presidential election in November 2016, the state of Wisconsin has de-registered over 482,000 voters from its rolls. This is according to the numbers that The Wisconsin Elections Commission post to their website. Looking at the history of voter registration levels in that state, there was an unprecedented rate of voter purging starting in August 2017, that continued through the beginning of 2018. The September 2018 numbers were just released the other day, and show 3,137,954 registered voters in the state of Wisconsin. While this represents the continuation of a modest increase over the past few months, the count of registered voters is still notably down from the overall peak in late 2016. Below is a chart of voter registration levels as reported by the Election Commission website. The red vertical lines indicate the date of a presidential election. This chart was generated using Highcharts.

Wisconsin state law mandates that voters be purged after 4 years of inactivity. Could these be the missing voters who didn't come out in the 2016 presidential? Turnout in 2016 was 2,976,150 compared to 3,068,434 in 2012. So there was a drop, but not nearly at the numbers being purged now.

Wisconsin already has a strict voter ID law. Although according to the Commission's website, there may be exceptions, consult the Election Commission website for details. What should be of concern here is how can these policies passively discourage individuals not familiar with these laws from voting? Perhaps these laws are well intended, but their net effect are disenfranchising people who need to be heard the most by their politicians. Wisconsin does also allow same-day voter registration. This is very different from my home state, which has deadlines to register anywhere between 7 and 22 days before an election (depending on the election type). One still needs to provide all the documents necessary to provide proof of Wisconsin residency.

Other states have also been aggressively purging their voters, and in some cases, under mysterious circumstances. If you aren't sure if you are registered, you can check Vote.org.

10/3/2018 Update:

I've added the voter registration number for October. I'll continue to make those monthly updates when I have the opportunity.

 


 

An earlier version of this chart had an error that caused all numbers to be off by 1 month. this has now been corrected.

Table Data

 
Date Registered Voters
10/1/2008 3,502,196
4/3/2009 3,765,074
10/20/2010 3,419,127
12/28/2010 3,493,306
7/13/2011 3,285,704
2/8/2012 3,275,607
8/9/2012 3,453,794
9/28/2012 3,461,587
10/8/2012 3,467,112
10/19/2012 3,487,295
11/5/2012 3,515,230
11/5/2012 3,515,813
12/3/2012 3,643,951
1/4/2013 3,695,584
2/1/2013 3,697,016
3/1/2013 3,690,529
4/1/2013 3,682,428
5/1/2013 3,633,419
6/1/2013 3,402,349
7/1/2013 3,401,125
8/1/2013 3,399,169
8/1/2013 3,399,169
9/18/2013 3,395,140
11/5/2013 3,380,843
12/1/2013 3,379,460
1/1/2014 3,374,647
2/1/2014 3,368,946
3/1/2014 3,364,966
4/1/2014 3,362,279
5/1/2014 3,379,930
6/1/2014 3,378,487
7/1/2014 3,375,755
8/1/2014 3,374,366
9/1/2014 3,380,491
10/1/2014 3,385,151
11/1/2014 3,402,741
12/1/2014 3,475,958
1/1/2015 3,488,772
2/1/2015 3,482,910
3/1/2015 3,478,273
4/1/2015 3,473,602
5/1/2015 3,477,606
6/1/2015 3,475,266
7/1/2015 3,472,406
8/1/2015 3,384,168
10/1/2015 3,379,480
11/1/2015 3,377,108
1/1/2016 3,373,861
3/25/2016 3,387,048
4/1/2016 3,393,706
5/1/2016 3,481,754
6/1/2016 3,495,379
7/1/2016 3,498,937
8/1/2016 3,492,577
9/1/2016 3,496,198
10/1/2016 3,505,062
10/19/2016 3,532,566
10/26/2016 3,548,780
11/2/2016 3,558,877
11/16/2016 3,619,996
12/7/2016 3,711,904
12/28/2016 3,729,682
2/1/2017 3,725,985
3/1/2017 3,716,483
4/3/2017 3,708,673
5/1/2017 3,710,544
6/1/2017 3,707,701
7/1/2017 3,591,846
8/1/2017 3,351,591
9/1/2017 3,349,816
10/1/2017 3,347,549
11/1/2017 3,345,821
12/1/2017 3,276,572
1/1/2018 3,264,677
2/1/2018 3,032,399
3/1/2018 3,043,021
4/1/2018 3,058,349
5/1/2018 3,085,428
6/1/2018 3,087,256
7/1/2018 3,092,580
8/1/2018 3,112,905
9/1/2018 3,137,954
10/1/2018 3,163,670
11/1/2018 3,252,407
12/1/2018 3,403,856
1/1/2019 3,425,218
2/1/2019 3,420,099
3/1/2019 3,416,204