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Wisconsin court race dubbed by NYT as nation's "most important" in 2023

Wisconsin Supreme Court seat election deemed “most important” race in 2023 by NYT
Wisconsin Supreme Court seat election deemed “most important” race in 2023 by NYT 02:32

MINNEAPOLIS -- You may have seen a string of new commercials and attack ads for a Wisconsin Supreme Court seat airing on TV over the last few days.

The hard-hitting spots are targeting western Wisconsin voters in a race that is getting nationwide attention. In fact, none other than the New York Times is calling this race the most important election in the nation in 2023. And the ads for this allegedly nonpartisan seat are pulling no punches.

The race is between liberal Janet Protasiewicz and conservative Dan Kelly.

At stake is a ten-year term that is expected to decide whether this court sides with liberals or conservatives. And, in another disputed Presidential election, the results could also determine the winner of Wisconsin's vote, which potentially could affect the national vote.

"The swing voters tend to be the voters who are in northern and northwestern Wisconsin, the areas that border Minnesota tend to be some of the swing-iest parts of this state, so those areas are going to be crucial," Anthony Chergosky, an assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, said.

As for the biggest issue fueling the campaings, you would have to say it's abortion. After Roe v. Wade was overturned, Wisconsin reverted back to an 1849 law banning all but "life-saving abortions." There appeared to be a backlash against that law in recent months, primarily with women offering strong support for Protasiewicz.

The primary last month drew a record 21% turnout for a judicial primary. The election is April 4 so we are looking at least at three and a half more weeks of these ads. Overall spending could end up topping $20 million.

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