Special Elections Update – August 14, 2015

As noted here a few days ago, there was a rare Wednesday special election, this one held in Tennessee State House District #14 in the Knoxville area.  Jason Zachary defeated Knox County School Board member Karen Carson, 58%-42%, in the Republican primary, and since no Democrats filed, Zachary will certainly be elected on September 29th.  The GOP currently holds a 73-26 party advantage in the Tennessee State House, to go along with their 28-5 margin in the Tennessee State Senate.  The election was viewed as a referendum on Republican Gov. Bill Haslam’s “Insure Tennessee” proposal, which would expand health insurance to low-income state residents.  Zachary opposes the measure, while Carson was for it.

Republican State Assemblyman Chris Kapenga’s victory in the special election for Wisconsin State Senate District #33 back in July meant there is now a vacancy in his old Assembly District #99 in the Milwaukee suburbs.  Four Republicans filed to run for that seat last week, meaning this will be a month-long campaign to the September 1st primary.  No Democratic candidates are running, so the winner of the GOP primary will be elected.  The Wisconsin State Assembly currently has 62 Republicans and 36 Democrats.

Next week is a quiet one for elections, with the only significant contest occurring in the 11th District of Milwaukee’s Common Council.  Alderman Joe Dudzik passed away suddenly in May, and seven candidates ran in the July 21st primary election to succeed him.  The two top vote-getters, Tim Carpenter and Mark Borkowski, were separated by just 26 votes out of 4,100 cast and will face each other in Tuesday’s special election to serve the remaining 8 months of Dudzik’s term.  Milwaukee will hold regular municipal elections for Mayor, Common Council, and other offices next spring.

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