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7th Congressional Race Shaping Up


MADISON, WI (WSAU) -- At least three declared candidates have beaten the deadline for next spring's 7th Congressional District Special Election. State Senator Tom Tiffany, Wausau School Board President Tricia Zunker, and US Army Veteran Jason Church had their nominating petitions approved by the Elections Commission on Monday, which was the filing deadline for the primary.

Wisconsin election law requires 1,000 valid signatures for a candidate to appear on the ballot. Tiffany turned in nearly 2,000 signatures, which is the maximum allowed.

Both Zunker and Church turned in approximately 1,500 signatures.

Edgar resident Michael Opela recorded around 800 signatures and is one of six candidates who's ballot status is listed as "Pending" according to the Commission.

A second declared Democrat, Lawrence Dale, is also listed as "Pending" after turning in 1,100 signatures. Dale is a Michigan resident who announced his candidacy at an event in Madison and lists his address as a P.O. Box in Eagle River. During his event at the Capitol, which is located outside the 7th District, he told reporters he would move to the District "in a legal sense."

Tiffany said he was gratified by the turnout. The 12th State Senate seat which he represents in the Wisconsin legislature is large, but the size of the Congressional district is even larger...

"....The(Wisconsin) 7th Congressional District is the largest geographic House of Representative district east of the Mississippi. So it has it own challenges, but I'm used to that because of the 12th Senate District I represent currently. That is one of the largest state Senate districts so I'm used to the travel that is entailed and long distances to get between places, but , ya, it is quite a challenge."

We will be contacting other candidates prior to the primary election date.

You can view the WEC candidate list here.

Candidates had until December 2nd to turn in their nominating petitions. Tiffany and Church will participate in a debate sponsored by No Better Friend Corp on December 12th at Wausau's Westwood Conference Center.

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