Improve the health of the people of Wisconsin by supporting and strengthening physicians' ability to practice high-quality patient care in a changing environment.

Primary elections create interesting general election matchups

Tuesday’s primary elections finalized who will face off in contested races this November, including two closely watched races: the Democratic primary for governor and the Republican primary for U.S. Senate.

State Superintendent Tony Evers emerged from a field of eight Democratic candidates (10 were actually on the ballot, but two had withdrawn from campaigning) to face incumbent Gov. Scott Walker, who is running for a third four-year term. Evers took 42 percent of the vote; firefighters union chief Mahlon Mitchell was second with 16 percent and former State Assembly Rep. Kelda Roys placed third at 13 percent. Evers was the top vote-getter in 67 of the state’s 72 counties.

Physician Michael White, MD, a dermatologist from La Crosse, will be on the November ballot for governor as the Green Party’s nominee.

State Senator Leah Vukmir defeated businessman Kevin Nicholson with 49 percent vs 43 percent of the vote in what was essentially a head-to-head Republican primary for U.S. Senate. Vukmir will now face incumbent Tammy Baldwin, who is running for a second six-year term.

Physician Candidates
Two physicians running for Congressional office lost their primary races. Elm Grove pediatrician Jennifer Hoppe Vipond, MD, faced long odds in her challenge to unseat U.S. Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner in the District 5 U.S. House Republican primary. Sensenbrenner, who first won office in 1978, prevailed in the primary and is expected to win the general election in this heavily-GOP district.

Marshfield nephrologist Brian Ewert, MD, lost in the Democratic primary contesting the District 7 U.S. House seat, currently held by Republican Sean Duffy. Polk County attorney Margaret Engebretson garnered about 57 percent of the vote in winning the Democratic primary.

One physician who will make it to the final ballot is emergency medicine physician Chris Kapsner, MD (D-Sheridan), who was unopposed in the primary for the vacant 23d State Senate district. He will face State Rep. Kathy Bernier (R-Lake Hallie), who was unopposed in the Republican primary.

Physician Involvement
Now that the November slate has been set, it is the perfect time to enhance the voice of medicine via participation in the Society’s political campaign advocacy programs WISMedPAC/DIRECT. Supporting candidates in their election efforts hammers home the point that physicians are paying attention to the political process and want to have a stake in who becomes our state and national policymakers. Support your candidates for local, state and national offices while strengthening the voice of medicine in Madison and Washington D.C.!

Contact Mark Grapentine, JD, in the Society’s Government Relations Department for more information.

Back to August 16, 2018 Medigram