Wisconsin election law says only way to exit from ballot is death

Wisconsin election law says only way to exit from ballot is death

Should President Joe Biden decide to exit the presidential race, Wisconsin law creates another impediment to Democrats replacing him.

Death is the only allowable reason for a candidate to drop out.

According to the state’s ballot access procedures, “Any person who files nomination papers and qualifies to appear on the ballot cannot withdraw their name from the ballot after filing. The name of that person shall appear upon the ballot except in case of death of the person.”

The Heritage Foundation, a conservative think tank, has identified states, such as Wisconsin, where Democrats could face legal challenges if they try to replace Biden.

Death is the only allowable reason for a candidate to drop out according to Wisconsin law, impeding potential replacement of Biden on the 2024 ballot. Getty Images

“We are monitoring the calls from across the country for President Biden to step aside, either now or before the election, and have concluded that the process for substitution and withdrawal is very complicated,” Heritage Foundation Oversight Project Executive Director Mike Howell said in a statement. 

Even without this provision in Wisconsin’s election law, removing Biden from the ballot would prove difficult to accomplish. 

Conservative think tank Heritage Foundation identified states, like Wisconsin, where Democrats could face legal challenges if they try to replace Biden. Anadolu via Getty Images

Prior to the national convention where delegates formally vote on candidate nominations, states conduct presidential preference primaries. Biden won in Wisconsin by a large margin.

While it’s possible that delegates could select a nominee other than Biden at the Democratic convention, this would violate the rules that delegates “shall in all good conscience reflect the sentiments of those who elected them.” 

Heritage Foundation Oversight Project Executive Director Mike Howell said in a statement they have “concluded that the process for substitution and withdrawal is very complicated.” ZUMAPRESS.com

In Madison last week Biden said, “I’m the nominee of the Democratic Party. I’m the nominee of this party because millions of Democrats like you just voted for me in primaries all across America. Well, let me say this as clearly as I can: I’m staying in the race.”

U.S. Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre confirmed that is still Biden’s plan during a press briefing Tuesday.

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