You, yes you, have an opportunity to be a difference-maker next Tuesday! Are you prepared to do that? Are you ready to vote knowledgeably, responsibly and prayerfully?
Next Tuesday, February 21, Wisconsin has its spring non-partisan primary election. This election narrows the field of candidates to two per race. No candidates in any race are running based on their political party affiliation, hence the “non-partisan” reference.
Every voter in Wisconsin will have at least one primary race on their ballot and that is for a justice for our state supreme court. This is an incredibly important race, more so than any supreme court race in our recent history, because the balance of the court is at stake.
Currently, the seven-member Wisconsin Supreme Court leans 4 to 3 conservative. However, Justice Pat Roggensack, who generally votes with the conservatives, is not running for another ten-year term. That creates an open seat without an incumbent. If a liberal wins this seat, then the balance of the court changes to 4-3 liberal.
Four candidates are on the ballot. Court observers tell us two of those candidates lean conservative and two lean liberal. In ballot order, the candidates are Janet Protasiewicz, Daniel Kelly, Everett Mitchell, and Jennifer Dorow. The liberal-leaning candidates are Janet Protasiewicz and Everett Mitchell, with Daniel Kelly and Jennifer Dorow leaning conservative.
This race has garnered nationwide attention because of the high stakes. National media outlets have pointed out that at stake are issues such as school choice, religious freedom, Act 10, redistricting maps, abortion, parental rights, transgender issues, and more.
As a result of all this, millions of dollars are expected to be spent on this race that will ultimately be decided on April 4 in the general election. Some are saying this will likely be the most expensive supreme court race in our state’s history. At a minimum, we as Wisconsin citizens will reap the impact of this election for at least ten years and in reality likely much longer with the decisions the court will render.
In the primary on Tuesday, February 21, voters will vote for just one of the four candidates. The top two vote-getters from the primary will go head to head in the general election on Tuesday, April 4. Educational information about the four candidates is available at ivoterguide.com. Just click Wisconsin on the US map on the home page.
Now, while the supreme court seat is the only statewide race with a primary, your own ballot may have other races on it. You need to know that before you go vote—whether you are voting early in person or by absentee ballot or going to the polls on Tuesday. I urge you to visit myvote.wi.gov, that’s myvote.wi.gov. On the home page just click on “What’s On My Ballot?” and follow the instructions to see exactly what is on your ballot. You just might be surprised. You might have a school board primary or a village or town board primary or a mayoral primary or some other local office with a primary. Don’t be surprised…be prepared.
I have one more thing for you to do. Talk to friends, family members, fellow church goers and others about what you’ve heard today. Urge them to make sure they vote on Tuesday, February 21. Share what you know about the candidates. Send emails and text messages. Make phone calls.
Early in-person voting is taking place statewide this week through this Friday. If you have an absentee ballot that you haven’t yet returned, you need to make sure that gets to your clerk’s office by the closing of the polls at 8 p.m. on Election Day, Tuesday, February 21.
This type of election typically has low voter turnout. We expect because of the high-profile supreme court race, next Tuesday’s election will be one of our higher spring primaries, but turnout will still be much less than during a typical fall partisan election. Your vote never counts more than in elections where few votes are cast—elections just like the one coming up. Be a difference maker…a smart, informed, prepared, not-surprised difference maker this Tuesday, February 21.
This is Julaine Appling for Wisconsin Family Council reminding you the prophet Hosea said, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.”
We Advocate, Educate, And Network To Preserve Wisconsin Family Values!