State Rep. Jesse James, of Altoona, won a three-way primary to replace Sen. Kathy Bernier, R-Chippewa Falls. James will be unopposed on the November ballot for the 23rd SD.
In other closely watched legislative primaries:
*Dem Jessica Katzenmeyer, who lost a bid for the Assembly in 2020, beat Tom Palzewicz, who lost his run for the 5th CD two years ago, by 8 percentage points in southeastern Wisconsin’s 5th SD. She will face former state Rep. Rob Hutton, R-Brookfield, in the swing seat.
*State Rep. Rachel Cabral-Guevara, R-Appleton, won the GOP primary for the 19th SD in the Appleton area and will face Dem Kristin Alfheim, of Appleton.
*Small business owner Cory Tomczyk, who wrote on his website it’s time to “investigate, prosecute and convict” over the 2020 election, won the three-way GOP primary for the seat of retiring Sen. Jerry Petrowski, R-Marathon. Tomczyk won 43 percent of the vote. The Wisconsin Realtors Political Action Fund put $150,000 behind Jon Kaiser, who owns an investment advisory firm and was arrested for drunken driving earlier this year. He got 18 percent of the vote, while Mosinee Mayor Brent Jacobson received 39 percent.
*Peter Schmidt, of Bonduel, who was charged with disorderly conduct in 2019 after choking an employee at his farm who had overslept and was late for work, was up by more than 850 votes in the six-way GOP primary for the strongly Republican 6th AD with 98 percent of the vote in.
*The Milwaukee Democratic Socialists of America hailed Darrin Madison’s win in the 10th AD primary over Bryan Kennedy. The group also endorsed Ryan Clancy, who was unopposed for Dem nomination in 19th AD. The 10th AD was a majority Black district under old maps, but dropped to 45.8 percent Black voting age population under new lines. That prompted concerns from some that higher turnout white areas in the district would make it difficult for a Black candidate to win. Madison, who narrowly lost a bid for the Milwaukee County Board in 2020, took 58 percent of the vote. Neither Clancy nor Madison faces a GOP opponent in November.
*Farmer Scott Johnson, who reported no fundraising activity for the year, won the GOP primary in the 33rd AD 52-48 over Jefferson Mayor Dale Opperman. A third-party group did several late mailers hitting Opperman in the race, and Johnson will now face state Rep. Don Vruwink. The Dem represented the 43rd AD this session, but decided to run for the 33rd, which includes his longtime home in Milton.
*Four months after losing a bid for Milwaukee mayor, Bob Donovan easily won a three-way primary for a suburban-based Assembly seat. He took 73 percent of the vote in a primary that included Milwaukee County GOP Chair David Karst. Donovan, who was a longtime Milwaukee alderman, now lives in Greenfield.