Voters will be able to select the county, state and national candidates who will appear on the Tuesday, Nov. 6, general election ballot for a number of offices, and in some cases the likely unopposed victor, in a partisan primary Tuesday, Aug. 14.
Candidates for a variety of county offices, including a hotly contested district attorney’s race, along with ones running for state Assembly and Senate and U.S. Congress will face off to secure either Republican or Democratic nominations for those offices in the election.
The biggest races are on the Democratic ticket. One will feature the only two candidates seeking to replace Thomas Eagon as district attorney. The other has nine people on the ballot to replace Louis Molepske Jr. as the state representative for the 71st Assembly District, which covers the towns of Alban, Amherst, Belmont, Buena Vista, Lanark, Linwood, New Hope, Plover, Sharon, Stockton and Ward 3 in the town of Grant; the villages of Amherst, Amherst Junction, Nelsonville, Park Ridge, Plover, Rosholt and Whiting; and Wards 1-33 in the city of Stevens Point.
In the district attorney race, Veronica Isherwood, a Portage County assistant district attorney, will square off against Molepske who did not seek re-election as state representative in order to pursue the seat Eagon vacated to become a Portage County Circuit Court judge.
The winner of the primary will be unopposed in the Tuesday, Nov. 6, general election. The two candidates’ answers to a League of Women Voters questionnaire were featured in the Aug. 3 Gazette.
In the Democratic race for Molepske’s current assembly seat, nine candidates are on the ballot, although two have since announced they no longer seek the seat.
The candidates include Corey Ladick, branch manager at Portage County Bank; Laura Hauser-Menting, a consultant and former Executive Board member of the Portage County Democratic Party; Jeri McGinley, clerk and treasurer of the village of Park Ridge; Katrina Shankland, a state political leader fellow with the Center for Progressive Leadership; Hans Schmid, 26, a case worker at a correctional nonprofit organization and a U.S. Army veteran and former vice president of the Student Government Association at University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point; Andrew Logan Beveridge, a lawyer from Stevens Point and a Stevens Point Common Council alderperson representing District 1; and David J. Verhage, 62, the chief financial officer at Herrschners in Stevens Point.
Tom Mallison, a Portage County Board supervisor and former Stevens Point Common Council alderperson, and Robert Steinke, a salesman, will also be on the Democratic ballot, but both announced they will not seek election.
The winner of the primary will go up against Republican Patrick Testin, a manager at a mattress firm in Plover, in the general election. All eight of the candidates still in the race responded to a League of Women Voters questionnaire featured on page 31 of this week’s Gazette.
Republican races on some county ballots include ones for state Senate District 24, which includes all of Portage County; U.S. Senator; and the 70th Assembly District – which includes the towns of Carson, Dewey, Eau Pleine and Hull; the village of Junction City; Ward 2 in the village of Milladore; and Wards 34 and 35 in the city of Stevens Point.
Republicans seeking the nomination for state Senate District 24 include Steve Abrahamson, Wisconsin Rapids, and Scott Kenneth Noble, Marshfield. The winner of the primary will face incumbent Democrat Julie Lassa in the Nov. 6 election.
Seeking the Republican nomination for U.S. Senator are Eric Hovde, Mark W. Neumann, former Gov. Tommy Thompson and Jeff Fitzgerald. The winner will face Democrat Tammy Baldwin in the general election.
Republicans Nancy Vandermeer and Dan Wald will face each other in the primary for the 70th Assembly District, with the winner taking on incumbent Democrat Amy Sue Vruwink in the general election.
Unopposed in the primary, and without challengers in the general election, are Democrats Shirley Simonis for county clerk, Stephanie Stokes for county treasurer, Cynthia Wisinski for county register of deeds and Joseph Glodowski for county surveyor.
Unopposed in the primary, but setting up a race in the general election, are incumbent Democrat Ron Kind and Republican Ray Boyland for U.S. Congressional District 3 representative; and incumbent Republican Scott Krug and Democrat Justin D. Pluess for the 72nd Assembly District seat, which includes the towns of Almond and Pine Grove; Wards 1, 2 and 4 in the town of Grant; and the village of Almond.
The primary election is being held a month earlier than it has traditionally been held in Wisconsin, from the second Tuesday in September to the second Tuesday in August, in order for the state to comply with a federal law designed to give military and overseas voters enough time to vote by absentee ballot.
Voters should remember that Wisconsin’s Aug. 14 partisan primary election is different than the November election in that voters choose their party preference in the privacy of the voting booth, but they cannot crossover and vote for candidates of more than one political party.
Stevens Point polling places are District 1 at Hi-Rise Manor, 1300 Briggs Court; District 2 at the Recreation Center, 2442 Sims Ave.; District 3 at the Dreyfus University Center, 1015 Reserve St.; District 4 at Madison School, 600 Maria Drive; District 5 at Jefferson School, 1800 East Ave.; District 6 at McKinley School, 2926 Blaine St.; District 7 at the National Guard Armory, 3116 Jefferson St.; District 8 at Washington School, 3500 Prais St.; District 9 at Lincoln Center, 1519 Water St.; District 10 at the Portage County Health Care Center, 825 Whiting Ave.; and District 11 at Pacelli High School, 1301 Maria Drive.
The village polling places are Almond, Municipal Center, Main Street; Amherst, Municipal Building, 160 Mill St.; Amherst Junction, Village Hall, 3980 Second St.; Junction City, Village Hall, 1001 Main St.; Milladore, Village Hall, 722 Bradley Ave.; Nelsonville, Village Hall, 9500 County Trunk SS; Park Ridge, Village Hall, 24 Crestwood Drive; Plover, Plover Municipal Center, 2400 Post Road; Rosholt, Village Hall, 137 N. Main St.; and Whiting, Municipal Center, 3600 Water St.
The town polling places are Alban, American Legion Hall, 290 Grand Ave. E., Rosholt; Almond, American Legion Hall, 1401 Division St.; Amherst, Town Hall, 4023 County Road Q; Belmont, Town Hall, 9110 16th Road; Buena Vista, Town Hall, 6684 County Road BB; Carson, Town Hall, 3756 County Road M; Dewey, Town Hall, 430 Dewey Drive; Eau Pleine, Town Hall, 3191 State Highway 34; Grant, Town Hall, County Road WW and 90th Street; Hull, Fire Station, 4818 Wojcik Memorial Drive; Lanark, Town Hall, intersection of County Trunk A and Town Hall Road, four miles south of Amherst; Linwood, Town Hall, 3160 Mill Creek Drive; New Hope, Town Hall, intersection of County Road A and Town Hall Road; Pine Grove, Municipal Center, 5444 County Trunk W, Bancroft; Plover, Municipal Building, 5081 Hoover Ave. South, intersection of Highway 54 and Hoover Avenue; Sharon, Town Hall (Old Edison School), Highway 66, one-half mile west of Ellis; and Stockton, Town Hall, 7252 Sixth St., Custer (east of Custer Road).
Portage County election returns will be available on the Portage County website at www.co.portage.wi.us by clicking on the “Election Results” tab on the left side of the page. The results will be updated periodically as they are tabulated, and users should click on the “refresh” button on their Internet page to update the more current results.