Local, state and federal races, referendums highlight Nov. 2 ballot

Local voters will be faced with a number of choices as they take to the polls for the Tuesday, Nov. 2 general election.

City of Merrill voters will have an opportunity to weigh in on the Riverfront Development plan. A citizen petition resulted in a referendum question being placed on the ballot. The referendum question asks, “Should the City proceed with the redevelopment known as ‘The Riverfront Project’ outside of the downtown area in Merrill?” A “NO” vote means that Riverfront Development should not proceed outside of the Merrill downtown area. A “YES” vote means that Riverfront Development may proceed as presented.

At the county level, incumbent Republican Lincoln County Clerk of Court Cindy Kimmons is being challenged by Democrat Christine Ament. Incumbent Lincoln County Sheriff Jeff Jaeger is unopposed on the ballot, although David Kirmsse has mounted a challenge as a write-in. Incumbent Lincoln County Coroner Paul Proulx is unopposed for re-election.

With incumbent Don Friske (R-Merrill) not seeking re-election to the District 35 state Assemble seat, Democrat Jay Schmelling, Merrill, and Republican Tom Tiffany, Hazelhurst, are facing off to fill the vacancy.

Voters will also help decide a race for Wisconsin Governor/Lieutenant Governor. The Democratic ticket of Tom Barrett and Tom Nelson is squaring off againt the Republican duo of Scott Walker and Rebecca Kleefisch. In other state races, Democrat Scott Hassett is challenging Republican incumbent J. B. Van Hollen for Attorney General; Republican David King is challenging incumbent Democrat Doug La Follette for Secretary of State; and Republican Kurt Schuller is challenging incumbent Democrat Dawn Marie Sass for State Treasurer.

For the U.S. Senate, Republican Ron Johnson is challenging incumbent Democrat Russ Feingold. With long-time incumbent David Obey (D-Wausau) not seeking re-election, Democrat Julie Lassa and Republican Sean Duffy will face off to take the open seat.

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