RACINE COUNTY — The Racine County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a voter fraud complaint against the estranged wife of state Rep. Robin Vos, R-Rochester, allegations that Vos said are politically motivated.
The complaint alleges that Vos’ wife Samantha, from whom he is legally separated, committed voter fraud by casting a Wisconsin ballot during a time that court records list her as a resident of Idaho.
Former Democratic Assembly candidate Roberta Retrum, of Eagle River, drove five hours to file the complaint in person at the county District Attorney’s office on Friday.
Retrum is treasurer for the Vilas County Democratic Party and said she also participates in the daily “Solidarity Sing-a-long” pro-union musical protests at the state Capitol.
The issue at hand — defining residency for the purposes of voting — will be appraised by an investigator at the Sheriff’s Office.
State election laws define a person’s residence as a “fixed habitation,” but note that a voter does not lose residency if he or she is absent — for example, outside the state — so long as the voter intends to return.
Vos said he and his wife consulted with attorneys who concluded that her vote was legal.
But Retrum said she was acting out of concern that voter fraud was a possibility. “One way or another, she’s guilty of something,” Retrum said, adding that because Samantha Vos said she was a resident of Idaho in legal documents filed this May, but voted in Wisconsin about that same time, “Either she committed perjury over there or she voted illegally here.”
According to Vos, Retrum’s actions are politically motivated, and her willingness to “drive five hours on a personal vendetta” represents a “disgusting,” ideologically motivated attack on his family.
Retrum said she filed the complaint because she felt Vos was inconsistent for “freely” leveling charges of voter fraud during
this summer’s recall election, but not raising the same concerns when presented with his wife’s alleged violation.
“That’s not politically motivated, that’s just calling it the way it is,” Retrum said.
Sheriff’s Lt. Steve Sikora said the claims have been assigned to an investigator, who will present his or her findings to the District Attorney for assessment once the investigation is complete.