Editorial: Remember primary firstWith eyes focused on the presidential election in November, it’s easy for voters to overlook a closer opportunity to have input in the future direction of the nation, state and county.
With eyes focused on the presidential election in November, it’s easy for voters to overlook a closer opportunity to have input in the future direction of the nation, state and county.
U.S. Sens. John McCain of Arizona and Barack Obama of Illinois are the two major party candidates battling for the presidency in what political pundits say should be the Democrats’ year nationally. Recent polls have got McCain and Obama nearly tied. The latter was in a fight almost-to-the-end with U.S. Sen. Hillary Clinton of New York for the Democratic nomination, while the former continues to try to distance himself from incumbent Republican President George W. Bush, who’s been labeled unpopular, poll-wise if not otherwise.
So it’s no surprise if the voting public has forgotten about the Tuesday, Sept. 9, primary election. But to miss it would be a mistake. There’s high interest by candidates, especially those involved in legislative and local races, as hopefuls seek many of the available seats. In several cases, what happens in the primary will determine whether they’ll still be going toward November.
Multiple names will be on the primary ballot for this district’s seat in the U.S. Congress, along with three area state assembly positions. Incumbent Democrat Ron Kind of La Crosse has opposition for the Third Congressional District post from Republican Paul Stark of Eau Claire as well as Libertarians Kevin Barrett of Lone Rock and Ben Olson of Wisconsin Dells.
In State Assembly District 29, incumbent Republican John Murtha of Baldwin faces challengers Democrat Chris Buckel of Hammond, Libertarian Craig Mohn of Woodville and Democrat L. John Peters of Menomonie.
State Assembly District 30 has incumbent Republican Kitty Rhoades of Hudson being challenged by Democrat Sarah Bruch of Hudson and Republican Bob Hughes of River Falls.
The largest slate for this area shows up in State Assembly District 91, where incumbent Democrat Barbara Gronemus of Whitehall has declined reelection. On the list are: Republican David Anderson of Whitehall, Democrat Marge Baecker of Independence, Independent Paul Beseler of Ettrick, Democrat Steve Boe of Taylor, Libertarian Ted Burleson of Fountain City, Democrat Remy Ceci of Pepin, Democrat Chris Danou of Trempealeau, Republican Dave Hegenbarth of Galesville and Democrat James Kraft of Durand.
All of these races will be narrowed in the primary. Additionally, a regional face-off will occur later in State Senate District 10, with incumbent Republican Sheila Harsdorf challenged by Democrat Alison Page. At the county level, the seats up for election featuring eventual direct competition are the county clerk’s, with incumbent Democrat Jamie Feuerhelm of Spring Valley opposed by Independent Heather Snook of Ellsworth, and the register of deeds’, with incumbent Republican Vicki Nelson of Ellsworth opposed by Democrat Paul Webb of Beldenville.
Be an influence on the outcome by first participating in the primary election Tuesday, Sept. 9.