Although the recall elections have accelerated the process and drawn the attention of election-watchers away from the general elections, the biennial fight for control of the Wisconsin legislature has quietly begun. Candidates for office this fall can now officially circulate nomination petitions.
This year, Wisconsin has moved its partisan primary election date up one month to August 14 to give military and overseas voters more time to cast their ballots. That change affected the time period for circulating nomination papers.
The deadline for candidates to file their nomination papers and declarations of candidacy is 5 p.m. Friday, June 1. By 4:30 p.m. Monday, June 4, all candidates for state office also must file a Statement of Economic Interests with the Government Accountability Board.
All 99 Assembly seats and 16 Senate seats will be up for grabs in November. It is shaping up to be a particularly interesting election season thanks to the number of legislators not running for re-election. The following legislators have announced their retirement:
- Sen. Jim Holperin of the 12th Senate District
- Sen. Pam Galloway of the 29th Senate District
- Rep. Anthony Staskunas of the 15th Assembly District
- Rep. Barbara Toles of the 17th Assembly District
- Rep. Tamara Grigsby of the 18th Assembly District
- Rep. Bob Ziegelbauer of the 25th Assembly District
- Rep. Dan Meyer of the 34th Assembly District
- Rep. Andy Jorgensen of the 37th Assembly District
- Rep. Dick Spanbauer of the 53rd Assembly District
- Rep. Michelle Litjens of the 56th Assembly District
- Rep. Robert Turner of the 61st Assembly District
- Rep. Karl Van Roy of the 90th Assembly District
- Rep. Mark Radcliffe of the 92nd Assembly District
In addition to retirements, redistricting is shuffling the candidate pool more than usual. The number of state legislators running in races where they are not the incumbent seems to grow by the day. Hamilton Consultants are monitoring GAB filings, and will release a comprehensive guide to the fall elections after the June 1 filing deadline.