Wisconsin’s decision to hold its presidential primary election as scheduled on April 7 became a lightning rod of controversy after fearmongers warned that it would lead to an uptick in COVID-19 cases and deaths.
That controversy was then attached to a broader discussion by Democrats and the establishment media about the supposed public safety merits of requiring mail-in voting for the November general election.
But that uptick in coronavirus cases never materialized, and a month later, a panic-driven narrative meant to assist in forever altering how Americans vote has been busted.
The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported Wednesday that Wisconsin health officials have determined that only a very small number of people who voted in Wisconsin were infected, and it is essentially impossible to determine where those infections came from.
“The state said about two dozen people may have been infected on election day,” the paper reported. “Some have characterized these numbers as an ‘uptick,’ but the experts are cautious.”
Ryan Westergaard, chief medical officer of the state Department of Health Services, told the Journal Sentinel 413,000 people voted in the state on April 7.
Westergaard conceded the two dozen new cases couldn’t be linked to Election Day.
“With the data we have, we can’t prove an association,” he said. “It would be speculative to say that was definitely the cause without really investigating closely and being clear that somebody really had no other potential exposure to infected people. I don’t think we have the resources to really do that to know definitely.”
University of Wisconsin infectious disease expert Oguzhan Alagoz told the Journal Sentinel the finding was unexpected, as he thought in-person voting would have created a notable increase in COVID-19 cases.
“I don’t think that the in-person election led to a major effect, to my surprise,” Alagoz said.
It shouldn’t be so shocking. Images from Election Day showed voters wearing masks and standing far apart in line, poll workers cleaning voting booths, and screens in place between workers and voters.
Long lines of voters forced to cast ballots in person were supposed to fill up hospitals with sick and dying people, but that isn’t what happened.
The establishment media warned us that no-good Republicans were going to get people killed.
Writing for The Guardian, Sandy Tolan all but assured us that Wisconsin’s decision to vote would be deadly.
“After a drawn-out battle between a Democratic governor and Republican legislature, the conservative Wisconsin supreme court issued a last-minute order telling confused election officials to proceed with the state’s primary election — despite a pandemic,” Tolan wrote on April 8.
Tolan added that blame for the coming deaths from in-person voting belonged to Republicans and even former Vice President Joe Biden, adding: “With no more Hail Marys available to the state’s Democrats, the election went forward as planned – and almost certainly, many more of my fellow Wisconsinites will die.”
The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Will Bunch penned an opinion piece published April 7 that was headlined, “In Tuesday’s Wisconsin primary, Republicans will literally kill you to win an election.”
Bunch assured us that he was not relying on hyperbole to describe the risks associated with those who dared vote in Wisconsin. He said death was certain to follow the primary.
The majority of the establishment media drew a narrative: In-person voting is going to kill people, so we need to rely on voting by mail.
Just look at what the fearmongering The New York Times pushed on Twitter:
Scenes from Wisconsin, as voters faced long lines, confusion and the risk of infection with an election taking place in spite of the coronavirus pandemic.
— The New York Times (@nytimes) April 8, 2020
The Democratic Party and its establishment media allies had hoped to apply that same logic to the November election so that they could further push for fraud-vulnerable mail-in ballots.
But their gloomy predictions appear not to have materialized, as Wisconsinites showed up to vote in droves, and we now have data to show that there was no surge in coronavirus cases linked to voting.
CNN attempted this week to salvage the narrative and circle the wagons by publishing a three-paragraph story online that stated “Dozens of coronavirus cases connected to US primary election voting.”
“At least 52 people in Wisconsin who said they voted in-person or worked the polls for the US state’s April 7 primary election have tested positive for coronavirus, according to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services,” the report said. “The state’s decision to hold in-person elections in the middle of a pandemic was roundly criticized by candidates and health experts, and turned into a bitter partisan battle.”
Of course, we now know those tens of cases cannot be conclusively linked to the Wisconsin primary, and CNN didn’t note that well over 400,000 people went to the polls.
The outlet would have been honest if it had reported that fewer than 0.01 percent of those who voted might have been infected with the coronavirus — if those cases could have been linked to the polls.
But CNN isn’t honest, and the apparent concern for public health from Democrats and the media now feels ever more disingenuous than it already did.
Democrats have been arguing for universal mail-in voting as a way to mitigate health risks and save us all from having to prove our identities when voting in the upcoming election.
The logic behind that argument has completely fallen apart.
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