An Unknown, But Crucial Election in Wisconsin 

There is a massive election happening this year, arguably the most important election in the United States in 2023.  A spring state Supreme Court race in Wisconsin has serious implications for politics across the nation. 

Control of the Wisconsin state Supreme Court is on the ballot this spring in April. The election could very well decide the fate of abortion rights, redistricting, and more in the critical swing state.

The winner will determine whether conservatives or liberals hold a 4-to-3 majority in a critical presidential battleground state. 

If a more liberal judge wins the election, it would flip the balance away from the conservatives in the key state. Conservatives have controlled the court since 2008. 

“The 2023 Wisconsin state Supreme Court race is the most important election that nobody’s ever heard of,” said Ben Wikler, the chair of the state Democratic Party. “It has implications that will affect national politics for years to come, really at every level of government.”

So what’s at stake in this election? 

Wisconsin Democrats want to overturn a state law from 1849 that bans abortion in nearly all cases. 

The Democrats also want to end an aggressive legislative gerrymander drawn by Republicans. 

Though the court upheld Wisconsin’s 2020 election results, last year it ruled drop boxes illegal, allowed a purge of the voter rolls to take place, and installed redistricting maps drawn by Republican legislators despite the objections of Gov. Tony Evers, a Democrat.

This election is liberals’ last chance for a while.

If conservatives win the seat, they will hold a majority on the court until at least 2026.

The fight in April won’t come cheap. The campaign is likely to be the most expensive judicial election in U.S. history, with total spending expected to exceed $30 million. 

Who’s running for the seat? On the left, there is Janet Protasiewicz and Everett Mitchell, county judges from Milwaukee and Madison. On the right, The conservatives are Daniel Kelly, a former State Supreme Court justice, and Jennifer Dorow, a Waukesha County judge. 

A nonpartisan primary next month on Feb. 21 will narrow the field to two.

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