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Primary Winners Tiffany, Zunker Lay Out Visions For Congressional General Election


A two-term state Senator will face the president of the Wausau School Board in May’s special election in the 7th Congressional District.

Sen. Tom Tiffany (R-Minocqua) won his primary election against Jason Church on Tuesday, while Tricia Zunker (D-Wausau) easily defeated Lawrence Dale on the Democratic side.

The winner will replace former Congressman Sean Duffy, who resigned in September.

Zunker got nearly 90 percent of the vote in the Democratic primary, but she told WXPR she’s been focusing on the general election for a long time.

“Quite frankly, I have been campaigning very hard throughout this district.  I’ve put thousands of miles on my car and just as many minutes on the phone speaking with voters, hearing their concerns.  I was feeling extremely confident going into tonight, and I’ve been focused on May 12 since I announced my candidacy for this seat,” Zunker said.

Tiffany earned about 58 percent of the vote against Church, a military veteran.

“I think there’s really a fundamental debate that’s going to go on here in 2020 on the national stage, and that is, is America going to be a socialist country or are we going to advance freedom?  That’s what my campaign has been about through the six months since Sean Duffy announced his resignation, is freedom,” Tiffany said.

Tiffany called the general election a decision on where power lies in our country.

“I want to bring control back from Washington, DC, return it to the states, to our local communities, to individuals,” he said.  “The Democrat party has been taking more power to Washington, DC whenever they can.”

Zunker contrasted herself with Tiffany, who has been a state legislator for nearly a decade.

“I’m not a career politician.  I’m a community leader.  I am committed to working across the aisle to achieve bipartisan solutions that can make life better here for everyone in Wisconsin,” she said.

The district, which covers roughly the northern third of Wisconsin, has voted solidly Republican since Democrat Dave Obey left office in 2011.

Ben worked as the Special Topics Correspondent at WXPR from September 2019 until November 2021. He now contributes occasionally to WXPR. During his full-time employment, his main focus was reporting on environment and natural resources issues in northern Wisconsin and Michigan's Upper Peninsula as part of The Stream, a weekly series.
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