Wisconsin becomes 28th state to pass a ban on ‘Zuckerbucks’ ahead of 2024 election

Posted 48 days ago


Wisconsin voters approved two constitutional amendments that would ban private funds – dubbed "Zuckerbucks" – from being used in election administration in the key battleground state.

On Tuesday, a pair of state constitutional amendments pushed by Republican lawmakers cleared the majority threshold of Wisconsin voters to pass.

The measures will ban clerks from accepting or receiving private grant money to help conduct elections, and require that only election officials can conduct elections.

"Wisconsin has spoken and the message is clear: elections belong to voters, not out-of-state billionaires," said state GOP Chairman Brian Schimming in a statement.

Democrats opposed both measures, arguing they would make it more difficult to conduct elections. They also raised concerns about how the broadly written election workers provision would be interpreted and implemented by local election officials, The Associated Press reported.

Both constitutional amendments on the ballot were in reaction to grant money that came to Wisconsin in 2020 from the Center for Tech and Civic Life, a liberal group that advocates for voter access.

That year the organization received a $300 million donation from Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, to help election officials buy supplies and run elections at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.

That funding came with the stated goal of helping jurisdictions deal with the coronavirus pandemic through measures such as paying for ballot drop boxes, voting equipment, additional manpower, protective gear for poll workers and public education campaigns on new voting methods.

The state’s five largest cities, all of which President Biden won, received $8.8 million. They were among roughly 200 communities in Wisconsin that received around $10 million as part of $350 million given out nationally, the AP reported.

Republicans nationwide have claimed that such funding disproportionately helps Democrats in elections.... (Read more)