Evers, Vukmir Win their Primaries and Advance to November

Author: Will Kenneally


State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers claimed victory in the Democratic gubernatorial primary and will face incumbent Gov. Scott Walker in November.

The three-term head of state public schools won the eight-way primary with 42 percent of the vote. Mahlon Mitchell and Kelda Roys were the two closest contenders with 16 and 13 percent respectively.

In remarks after winning the race, Evers touted his background in education.

“This election is bigger than Scott Walker, and frankly it’s bigger than me–this election is about our kids,” Evers said. “As your next governor, I will make the largest investment in early childhood education that our state has ever seen.”

The Democratic field lined up to support the nominee, with Roys releasing a statement saying “I’m delighted to offer him my complete and enthusiastic support,” and Mitchell tweeting that “now is the time to come together and support our nominee [Tony Evers]. Our common enemy is the division that [Scott Walker] created.”

In his victory speech, Evers also turned his attention toward beating Walker in the fall.

“I’ve seen on the faces of our kids what the devastation of Scott Walker’s cuts to our public education has done,” Evers said. “Scott Walker does what’s best for Scott Walker, and I’ll do what’s best for Wisconsin,” he later added.

Walker did not mention Evers by name in his election night public comments, saying that “sadly, our opponents endorse many of the same policies that got this state into trouble in the past.” He spoke at a campaign rally shortly before the polls closed.

  • Tony Evers (D) 41.75%
  • Mahlon Mitchell (D) 16.38%
  • Kelda Roys (D) 12.82%
  • Kathleen Vinehout (D) 8.18%
  • Mike McCabe (D) 7.39%
  • Matt Flynn (D) 5.87%
  • Paul Soglin (D) 5.23%
  • Andy Gronik (D) 1.24%
  • Dana Wachs (D) 0.78%
  • Josh Pade (D) 0.36%

(Andy Gronik and Dana Wachs both dropped out of the race before the primary, but still appeared on the ballot)

Data from: WisconsinVote.org

U.S. Senate

The other major statewide primary was to decide which Republican would face incumbent Democratic U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin in November.

The five-way race was largely a decision between state Sen. Leah Vukmir and businessman Kevin Nicholson. Vukmir won her primary with 49 percent of the vote, beating Nicholson by a 6-point margin.

Vukmir received the state party’s backing at their convention in April. After her election victory, she wrote in a statement that there is “no substitute for the grassroots [organizing] – and I’m humbled to have their support.”

“Voters sent a clear message that we want to take our Wisconsin Way, our economic miracle, and our strong conservative victories to Washington and help President Trump make America great again,” Vukmir said.

Baldwin congratulated Vukmir on the win while criticizing her, saying that “I’m really running against the special interests who want a bought and paid for Senator.”

  • Leah Vukmir (R) 49.04%
  • Kevin Nicholson (R) 42.94%
  • George Lucia (R) 4.25%
  • Griffin Jones (R) 1.98%
  • Charles Barman (R) 1.79%

Data from: WisconsinVote.org

State Assembly

Democrat Shelia Stubbs won the primary for the open seat in the 77th Assembly District. The district, which includes Madison’s south and west sides, was left vacant when Democratic Rep. Terese Berceau announced her retirement this year.

  • Shelia Stubbs (D) 49.86%
  • Shabnam Lotfi (D) 36.06%
  • John Imes (D) 7.85%
  • Mark Garthwaite (D) 6.22%

Other contested races

1st Congressional District:

  • Randy Bryce (D) 59.58%
  • Cathy Myers (D) 40.42%


  • Bryan Steil (R) 51.58%
  • Nick Polce (R) 14.94%
  • Paul Nehlen (R) 11.08%
  • Kevin Steen (R) 10.46%
  • Jeremy Ryan (R) 10.39%
  • Brad Boivin (R) 1.54%

Lt. Governor:

  • Mandela Barnes (D) 67.96%
  • Kurt Kober (D) 32.04%

Secretary of State:

  • Doug La Follette (D) 65.93%
  • Arvina Martin (D) 34.07%


  • Jay Schroeder (R) 71.27%
  • Spencer Zimmerman (R) 28.73%

State Treasurer:

  • Sarah Godlewski (D) 43.43%
  • Dawn Sass (D) 32.27%
  • Cynthia Kaump (D) 24.30%


  • Travis Hartwig (R) 72.28%
  • Jill Millies (R) 27.72%

Official results will be provided by the Wisconsin Elections Commission.