UPDATE: Wis. judge: Remove fake names from recall petition

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WAUKESHA, Wis. (AP) -- A Waukesha County judge has ordered state election officials to "take affirmative steps" to remove fake or duplicate names from recall petitions.

Judge Mac Davis ruled Thursday that the Government Accountability Board needs to strengthen the process by which it confirms whether signatures are valid.

The board has said its job is to verify that addresses are legitimate, and that it's up to the targeted office-holders to challenge fake names such as Bugs Bunny. But Davis said the board is obligated to remove obviously fake names, as well as duplicate and illegible signatures.

The ruling comes in a lawsuit filed by Gov. Scott Walker's campaign and another party, in response to comments the board made about how it plans to validate petitions seeking Walker's recall.


WAUKESHA, Wis. (AP) -- A Waukesha County judge is preparing to hear arguments in a lawsuit that will determine how the state elections board handles petition signatures.

The plaintiffs include Gov. Scott Walker's campaign. They want to challenge the way the Government Accountability Board validates signatures on petitions to recall Walker.

The lawsuit wants the board to look for and eliminate duplicate signatures, illegible signatures and obviously fake names. The board counters that state law requires it to presume signatures are valid as long as they're properly dated and have Wisconsin addresses. It says the burden of challenging signatures is on the office-holder being targeted.

The judge is scheduled to hear arguments Thursday afternoon.

The recall effort was motivated in part because of Walker's proposal that effectively ended collective-bargaining rights for public workers.

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