By Shereen Siewert
Voters throughout Wisconsin took to the polls Tuesday for the state’s primary election, casting ballots in local, state and national contests.
The race for Wausau City Council Dist. 10 is now down to two candidates. Lou Larson and Sherry Abitz were the top two candidates in the primary. Lou Larson was the top vote-getter with 133 ballots cast, or 39.12 percent of the vote.
Former council member Sherry Abitz was a close second with 125 votes, or 36.76 percent. Both Larson and Abitz will advance to the general election.
Donna Krause, who represents the district on the Marathon County Board of Supervisors, came in third with 79 votes and will not advance.
Voters in Edgar rejected a referendum to exceed the state’s revenue limit by $650,000 to support educational programs and defray operational and maintenance expenses. The measure was voted down by a margin of 54 to 46 percent.
Incumbent Justice Dan Kelly and Dane County Circuit Judge Jill Karofsky emerged from a three-way state Supreme Court primary Tuesday, besting Marquette University law professor Ed Fallone to advance to the April general election.
The top two vote-getters earned the right to appear on the April 7 ballot with a 10-year term at stake.
The Supreme Court race is officially nonpartisan but Kelly is part of the court’s five-member conservative majority. Republicans have thrown their support behind him after then-Gov. Scott Walker appointed him to the bench in 2016 to replace the retiring David Prosser.
Karofsky is a Dane County judge who worked as a crime victim advocate for the state Justice Department. Liberals have thrown their support behind her.
The race has been marked by Kelly and Karofsky’s increasingly bitter sparring. Karofsky has accused Kelly of being corrupt, saying he constantly rules in favor of conservative groups. Kelly has insisted that he uses “rigorous logic” to arrive at his rulings and Karofsky is slandering him.
Kelly built an enormous fund-raising advantage over both challengers, generating nearly $1 million over the last 13 months. Karofsky raised almost $414,000 during that span. Fallone had just under $172,000.
The race won’t change the court’s ideological leaning but a Kelly defeat would shave the conservative majority to 4-3 and give liberals a chance to take over in 2023.
State Sen. Tom Tiffany has won a Republican primary in the race to replace U.S. Rep. Sean Duffy in northern Wisconsin’s 7th Congressional District.
Tiffany defeated retired Army Capt. Jason Church in Tuesday’s primary. He advances to a May 12 special election to represent the heavily conservative district for the remainder of this year.
Tiffany will face Democrat Tricia Zunker, president of the Wausau school board, in the special election. She easily won Tuesday’s primary over challenger Lawrence Dale.
The Associated Press contributed to this report