The November 2020 elections are about eleven months away and yet in western Wisconsin, the congressional campaigns are beginning to become active. The obvious reason is the Special Election in the 7th Congressional District, but conservative candidates in the 3rd are beginning to stir as well.
Rep Sean Duffy (R-7th) resigned in September and Governor Evers, saying he wanted a quick election, almost immediately set a January 27th election with a December 30th Primary. The Federal Government stopped that as there wasn’t enough time between the Primary and General Election for the overseas voters, primarily the Military, to get the ballots and have them returned in time. Now the Primary is concurrent with the Spring Election Primary on April 7th but the Special Election isn’t until May 12th --some 8 months after the seat became vacant. The 7th Congressional District includes parts of neighboring Monroe, Juneau, Wood, and Jackson Counties, all of Clark County, and part or all of 21 other counties covering most of northern Wisconsin. Nomination signatures are due to the Wisconsin Election Commission early in December.
The two Republican candidates in the 7th Congressional District are State Senator Tom Tiffany and combat war veteran Jason Church. Senator Tiffany has completed nine years in the Wisconsin Legislature. He recently sent out a news release “The Badge Backs Tiffany for Congress” but only listed nine current Sheriffs that have endorsed him; nine out of the 26 counties he wants to represent. Digging further, the Wisconsin Professional Police Association, an organization of 10,000 members from 300 affiliates, rated Senator Tiffany in their 2018 Scorecard. Senator Tiffany was rated 27th of 29 Senators receiving a rating. Somehow, it is questionable if “The Badge Backs Tiffany”.
The other candidate, Jason Church, a UW-L graduate, is a decorated combat war veteran having lost both legs below the knee while leading a platoon of 40 Soldiers in Afghanistan. Since his Army service he has earned a master’s degree from Georgetown and a law degree from UW-Madison. He has also worked briefly for US Senator Ron Johnson. He will make an excellent citizen legislator representing the citizens of the 7th Congressional District.
In the 3rd Congressional District, which includes most of the Coulee Region, there are six –maybe 7- quality candidates that will face off in the Republican Primary in August to face Rep Ron Kind in the General Election in November, 2020. It may not be Rep Ron Kind on the ballot as he will probably have a Primary opponent for perhaps the first time in his Congressional career. Since the 3rd District candidates don’t have to turn in nomination signatures until early June and the Primary isn’t until August, these candidates aren’t as active as those in the 7th District. There appears to be a variety of experience, education, and enthusiasm in this group of patriotic citizens that desire to go to Congress. About the only known thing is that the last three Republican nominees were all retired active duty Army officers, and they all lost to Rep Kind. Maybe it is time to look for a different type of candidate?
If this isn’t enough to think about considering the forthcoming Congressional campaigns, don’t forget that when the Special 7th District election is over in May, the victor and other candidates must immediately prepare for an August Primary and November General Election! This chapter in Wisconsin history should be complete in eleven months.