A Merrillan Democrat is challenging Republican incumbent Nancy VanderMeer of Tomah in the 70th Assembly District.

Cari Fay and VanderMeer are the only two candidates to file in the 70th District, and both will advance to the Nov. 6 general election. The deadline for filling nomination papers was Friday. The primary is Aug. 14.

VanderMeer is seeking her third two-year term.

Fay is a contract health services assistant administrator and mediator for Ho-Chunk Nation Department of Health. She was previously a Milwaukee police officer and served in the Marines.

The 70th District includes parts of northern Monroe County, including the cities of Tomah and Sparta, and parts of eastern Jackson County.

Three Democrats will vie for the chance to challenge first-term Rep. Treig Pronschinske, R-Mondovi, in the 92nd Assembly District: Desiree Gearing-Lancaster and Max Hart, both of Black River Falls, and Rob Grover of Galesville.

In the 96th Assembly District, voters in both parties will choose a candidate to replace Rep. Lee Nerison, R-Westby, who retired this year after serving 14 years in the Assembly. The district includes most of southern Monroe County. Viroqua farmer Loren Oldenburg and college student Ahna Key of Prairie du Chien will face off in the Republican primary. The Democratic primary will pit dairy farmer Paul Buhr against fellow Viroqua resident Alicia Leinberger, a renewable energy business owner who lost to Nerison in 2016.

The 50th Assembly District has three candidates seeking to replace Ed Brooks, R-Reedsburg, who isn’t seeking another term. Republican Tony Kurtz of Wonewoc, Democrat Art Shrader of Reedsburg and Independent James Krus of Camp Douglas are the three candidates who will advance to the general election. The district includes all of Juneau County and the towns of Clifton and Glendale and village of Kendall in Monroe County.

No primary for Kind

U.S. Rep. Ron Kind will not face a Democratic primary election. LGBTQ rights activist Juliet Germanotta, who declared plans in November to challenge the 11-term incumbent, failed to file the required signatures to get her name on the ballot by Friday’s deadline.

Kind, who has represented Wisconsin’s 3rd Congressional District since 1997, will face Republican Steve Toft. Neither of the other declared Republican candidates, Hagar City truck driver Brandon Cook and former Eau Claire city council candidate Che Stone Parrott, filed nomination papers Friday.

In the 7th Congressional District, Democrats Margaret Engebretsen of Balsam Lake and Brian Ewert of Marshfield are running against Republican incumbent Sean Duffy of Wausau. Duffy is unopposed in the primary. Ken Driessen, who lists his party as Direct Participatory, will also be on the ballot.

The 7th District includes the towns of LaGrange, Lincoln, Scott and Byron and villages of Wyeville and Warrens in Monroe County and the towns of Knapp, Bear Bluff and City Point in Jackson County. The remainder of Monroe and Jackson counties is in the 3rd Congressional District.


Tomah Journal editor

Steve Rundio is editor of the Tomah Journal. Contact him at 608-374-7785.

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