The rules for poll watchers in Wisconsin are not changing.

The state’s Elections Commission on Monday deadlocked on a plan to clarify the rules regarding where election observers can stand on Election Day.

Republican Commission chairman Don Mills proposed new guidelines that spelled out how volunteers could interact at the polls.

“A designated observation area at the polling place or other location should permit observers to hear instructions and to readily observe all public aspects of the process without disrupting activities,” Mills’s proposal stated.

Mills said he wanted to give guidance to local election clerks who may be nervous about next month’s elections.

The Democrats on the Commission, however, blocked his ideas.

Commissioner Ann Jacobs said there is not enough time to get feedback from local election managers about how a rule change would impact them.

“We’re 30 days out,” she said. “We need to keep our hands off the process absent something really urgent.”

Democratic commissioners also took issue with what Mills called a mistake.

His plan allowed for election observers to be “within” three feet of a voter. Wisconsin law says poll watchers must stay “at least” three feet away.

Mills offered to clarify his proposal, but the Commission deadlocked with a 3-3 vote.

That means local election managers across the state could interpret the state’s laws differently when voters head to the polls in less than a month.

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