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La Crosse County comes out big for Protasiewicz in Wisconsin Supreme Court race



FILE - Wisconsin Supreme Court candidates Republican-backed Dan Kelly and Democratic-supported Janet Protasiewicz participate in a debate Tuesday, March 21, 2023, in Madison, Wis. (AP Photo/Morry Gash)

The Wisconsin Supreme Court race was not close.

While election results from Tuesday are not complete, Janet Protasiewicz had a 10-point lead on Dan Kelly with almost all counties reporting at over 95 percent.


In La Crosse County, Protasiewicz — backed by Democrats in the “nonpartisan” race — completely ran away with the race by nearly 30 percent.

There were 37,307 votes cast, according to the county’s unofficial summary, and Protasiewicz received 64.23 percent of the vote to Kelly’s 35.62 percent — winning by 10,674 votes.

In the 2020 Wisconsin Supreme Court race, Dan Kelly lost to Jill Karofsky by 10.5% statewide — winning by 162,439 votes.

In La Crosse County, for that election, Karofsky beat Kelly by 32.7 percent with 29,572 people voting, and Karofsky winning by 9,672 votes — nearly identical to this spring’s election, though 7,735 more people voted in 2023.

La Crosse County Democratic Party chair William Garcia was proud of Tuesday’s result.

“That is the power of La Crosse County,” Garcia told WIZM. “We are always at the forefront of progressive candidates in statewide elections.”

Garcia noted Milwaukee and Dane counties will post big numbers in that regard, but La Crosse County is next in line.

Dane went 82 percent for Protasiewicz, while Milwaukee was at 74. In counties with over 10,000 votes, La Crosse and Eau Claire were the next highest counties at 64 percent for Protasiewicz.

“When we do our job properly, here in La Crosse, that’s what happens,” Garcia said. “We provide the votes for the win — we put the candidate over the top. And that’s what happened here, again.

“You’ve got La Crosse, which comes in with this high voter turnout, with a high degree of people voting for the progressive candidate, Protasiewicz.”

Garcia also pointed out that Protasiewicz did campaign in La Crosse, but it was very under the radar. While Kelly visited West Salem and French Island during a weekend frenzy of campaign stops, Protasiewicz was in La Crosse last Saturday.

“She came by to launch one of our canvassing sessions,” Garcia said of Protasiewicz stopping at the party office. “So, she came by, met all the canvassers that were going out, knocking on doors. She gave a little speech about what she’s hoping to accomplish when she wins, and then kind of rallied them out the door as they went out to knock doors.”

Other counties over 60 percent for Protasiewicz were Bayfield (64% — 6,785 votes) and Menominee (70% — 563 votes).

The highest percentage counties for Kelly included Washington (66% — 52,386 votes), Oconto (64% — 12,420), and Shawano (64% — 10,840). Florence County was the highest, voting 70% for Kelly with 1,572 votes.

Host of WIZM's La Crosse Talk PM | University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point graduate | Hometown: Greenville, Wis | Avid noonball basketball player and sand volleyballer in La Crosse

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  1. nick

    April 5, 2023 at 10:53 am

    I knew that she would win big. Abortion was the driving cause for her victory. What does it say about a society that wants the freedom to end a child’s life any at time during a pregnancy including labor?
    It is amazing since the millions and millions of abortion inn this country is akin to the genocide.

  2. Ell Jay

    April 5, 2023 at 2:21 pm

    FRAUD…PLAIN AND SIMPLE! Yes, I too graduated from Point, so what. Soros and Illinois governor among other inferred in what was labeled a “nonpartisan” election. Non-partisan my ass.
    And most importantly, how close Lacrosse it to the Twin Cities whereby they bus illegal votes over to Wisconsin like Illinois.
    There were multiple counties where the vote weren’t even tallied and they called the election for the bitch!

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