Court Orders Wisconsin Assembly to ‘Immediately’ Release Records from Election Investigation or Show Cause

Just hours after American Oversight filed a lawsuit seeking to compel the release of records related to the Wisconsin Assembly’s partisan election investigation, the Dane County Circuit Court ordered Speaker Robin Vos and the Assembly to produce the records or to show cause for why they have failed to do so.

Over the summer, American Oversight filed multiple open records requests for documents with the potential to shed light on the inquiry, one of a growing number of state election reviews that perpetuate the lie of a “stolen” election. Vos announced the investigation in late May, and it is now being headed by former state Supreme Court Justice Michael Gableman. 

Under Wisconsin’s open records law, state officials are required to produce documents — including those held or created by contractors hired by state authorities — “as soon as practicable and without delay.” Vos and the Assembly have failed to produce any records from the contractors hired to conduct the review, and on Friday, American Oversight sued.

In the order, Judge Valerie Bailey-Rihn wrote that it appears Vos and the Assembly had “unjustifiably withheld and refused to release the contractor records to which the Petitioner is entitled,” and ordered them to produce the responsive records or to show cause why not at a hearing scheduled for Nov. 5.