Revenue nominee Barca resigns Assembly seat

Photo by Michelle Stocker, The Capital Times

State Rep. Peter Barca, who is in line to lead the Department of Revenue under Gov. Tony Evers, has resigned his seat in the Assembly.

Barca, D-Kenosha, took the oath of office Monday and then promptly turned in his resignation letter. His Capitol office said the longtime lawmaker had to resign before he could begin the confirmation process for his appointment.

Mike Haas, a staff attorney with the Elections Commission, said the window has already passed that would’ve allowed the special election for the 62nd AD to coincide with the regularly scheduled April election.

Under state law, a special election must be held within 62 to 77 days of a guv’s order, and there are 84 days until the April 2 general election.

But there is another provision in state law requiring a special election to be called 49 days before the spring primary to coincide with that race. The Feb. 19 primary is now 42 days away.

Still, he said it would still be possible to have some overlap. If Evers ordered the special election for April 30, the primary, if necessary, would be April 2.

Evers’ office said the guv hopes to have some of the special election overlap with the regularly scheduled spring elections to save money and lighten the workload on local officials.

At least two possible Dem candidates have emerged to run for Barca’s strongly Dem seat.

Gina Walkington, a community organizer who ran unsuccessfully for the neighboring 61st AD this fall, said she is looking at a bid. She lives in Bristol, where her children attend school. Barca’s former district runs from the city of Kenosha and west into the county, including Bristol, as well as north to Racine.

Dem sources also indicated Thaddeus “Tip” McGuire, an assistant DA for Milwaukee County, was looking at a bid. He previously worked in the Kenosha County DA’s office, according to his LinkedIn profile. He didn’t immediately return an email seeking comment.

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