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LIVE RESULTS: Karofsky Defeats Kelly For Supreme Court; Other Races Across Area

Ben Meyer/WXPR


(Navigate the spreadsheet’s tabs to see national, state, county, municipal, and school results, updated live by the WXPR team)

Top storyline:  Jill Karofsky has defeated incumbent Dan Kelly in the race for state Supreme Court.  The Associated Press called the race with just more than 60 percent of the precincts reporting and Karofsky holding a six-point lead.  Kelly has conceded.  The win for Karofsky narrows the advantage of conservatives on the Court to 4-3.

---Early Tuesday morning---

  • Crandon’s school referendum was successful by 71 votes out of more than 1,700 cast.  Voters approved raising their own taxes by $1 million over the next five years to pay for school operations.
  • In Forest County, County Board Supervisor Bill Chaney held on to his seat with a seven-vote victory over Albert Thompson.
  • The final margin for Jill Karofsky over incumbent Daniel Kelly was more than 160,000 votes statewide.  One hundred percent of precincts are now reporting.
  • With all precincts reporting statewide, Joe Biden unofficially drew 63 percent of the vote in the Democratic Presidential primary.  Bernie Sanders had 32 percent.

---10:00 p.m.---

  • Six hours after results reporting opened, the Town of Crandon in Forest County still hasn’t reported results to the Forest County Clerk.  The town’s results are important.  They will decide the outcome a $5 million referendum in the School District of Crandon, in which just 48 votes separated "Yes" and "No" out of more than 1,500 cast so far. A contested county board seat is also on the ballot.  A call to the Town of Crandon Clerk was not returned.  The municipality is on the only one in the area not to have reported.

---8:55 p.m.---

  • We can now project that Leon Stenz has been reelected as the circuit court judge for Forest County, defeating former judge Robert Kennedy Jr.
  • Four candidates ran for three seats on the Rhinelander School Board.  Mike Roberts, Duane Frey, and Merlin Van Buren won seats, while Benjamin Roskoskey came in fourth.

---8:20 p.m.---

  • We’ll have four new members of the Rhinelander Common Council: Carrie Mikalauski defeated incumbent Lee Emmer, Gerald Anderson defeated Wil Losch, Eileen Daniel beat Bill Freudenberg, and Tom Barnett was unopposed.
  • Jim Winkler will hold onto his seat on the Oneida County Board, defeating Bob Metropulos.
  • However, Jim Winkler lost to Bob Metropulos for one of two seats on the Newbold Town Board.  Mike McKenzie and Metropulos both gained more votes than Winkler.

---7:55 p.m.---

  • Lance Krolczyk has retained his seat on the Oneida County Board, winning a write-in campaign against fellow write-in Candy Sorensen.  Krolczyk got 56 percent of the vote.
  • Nubs Ashbeck was a winner for a seat on the Lincoln County Board, defeating Landis Holdorf by 20 points.
  • On the Merrill City Council, Paul Russell, John Van Lieshout, and Mike Rick all won contested races.
  • With 68 percent of the precincts reporting, Judge Leon Stenz leads challenger Robert Kennedy Jr. in Forest County.  He’s garnered 58 percent of the vote.

---7:20 p.m.---

  • Jill Karofsky has defeated incumbent Dan Kelly in the race for state Supreme Court.  The Associated Press called the race with just more than 60 percent of the precincts reporting and Karofsky holding a six-point lead.  Kelly has conceded.

---7:10 p.m.---

  • After multiple tries, voters in the Phillips School District have finally approved a referendum, funneling $9.7 million into the school system.  Sixty percent of voters approved the measure.
  • Sixty-one percent of voters supported a school spending referendum in White Lake, which requested $700,000 each of the next five years.
  • Billy Fried has lost his seat on the Minocqua Town Board, the only of three candidates left out for two available seats.  Brian Fricke and Bill Stengl won seats on the board.
  • With about a quarter of the votes reported in Forest County, incumbent Judge Leon Stenz is leading challenger, and former county judge, Robert Kennedy Jr.  Stenz is getting 61 percent of the vote.
  • State Supreme Court challenger Jill Karofsky still has a six-point lead on Daniel Kelly with almost 60 percent of the votes counted.

---6:40 p.m.---

  • Jill Karofsky has opened up a small lead over incumbent Daniel Kelly in the race for state Supreme Court.  She’s up 53 percent to 47 percent, with just more than half the state reporting.
  • Steve Doyen has lost his seat on the Vilas County Board.  He won just 44 percent of the vote, as Mary Rasmussen will take the Phelps-area seat.
  • On the Oneida County Board, incumbent Jack Sorensen drew 18 more votes than challenger Rhody Jakusz and will retain his seat.
  • In Price County, Alan Barkstrom has defeated Peter Dahlie by six percentage points for a seat on the county board, and Ginny Strobl has beaten James Adolph by nine votes.

---5:45 p.m.---

  • Joe Biden has won the Wisconsin Democratic Presidential Primary.  With early results coming in, he had earned 65 percent of the vote.  Wisconsin voters cast their ballots before Bernie Sanders dropped out of the race.
  • Incumbent Daniel Kelly and challenger Jill Karofsky are nearly deadlocked with 27 percent of the vote reporting in the state Supreme Court race.  Kelly stood at 51 percent, while Karofsky had earned 49 percent.
  • Voters supported Marsy’s Law, a state constitutional amendment affording more rights to victims of crime.  Early voting showed it being supported at about a three-quarters rate.
  • Incumbent Oneida County Board Supervisor and former School District of Rhinelander Superintendent Robb Jensen has been defeated.  By 54 percent of the vote, Robert Thome has knocked him off.


Wisconsin’s April 2020 elections were unlike any other, held amid the COVID-19 crisis.  After days of back-and-forth between Gov. Tony Evers, the Legislature, and the courts, in-person voting went forward on April 7 even as other states were postponing their elections.

In addition, a record number of voters requested absentee ballots, more than 1.3 million people in Wisconsin.  Those ballots had to be postmarked by April 7 and received by April 13 to be counted.

To add to the changes, no results were released on election night, when they are traditionally reported.  By a federal judge’s order, clerks couldn’t report results until 4 p.m. on Monday, April 13.

View those results here.  They’ll be updated live by the WXPR team as they come in.

Credit Ben Meyer/WXPR
A couple arrives to vote in Rhinelander on Tuesday, April 7.

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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