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Politics unusual as state adopts new senate, assembly districts

Politics unusual as state adopts new senate, assembly districts
New State Assembly Map
Politics unusual as state adopts new senate, assembly districts
New State Assembly Map

It will be politics unusual in Wisconsin in the coming months as the shake-up caused by new legislative boundary maps makes its way to the ballot box next November.

Under a deadline imposed by the Wisconsin Supreme Court to approve new legislative district maps for the state after the previous maps were ruled as being unconstitutional, the Republican-controlled state legislature voted to adopt the maps previously drawn up by Gov. Tony Evers.

On a state level, the new district maps aim to make the state more competitive for both Democrats and Republicans. Statewide polling data and results in statewide elections show state residents to be divided fairly evenly between the two major parties. The previous maps, instituted under Gov. Scott Walker’s administration drew criticism for resulting in lopsided Republican majorities in both houses of the legislature.

Locally, with the changes things have gotten a lot more complicated for Taylor County residents with the redrawn district boundaries moving the area outside the 87th Assembly District and splitting the southwestern corner of the county including the city of Medford into the 69th district with the remainder of the county now in the 68th district.

The previous 87th district covered Sawyer, Rusk, Taylor, and the northwest side of Marathon County. None of those areas are covered in the new version of District 87.

The 69th district now covers most of Taylor and Chippewa Counties and all of Price and Rusk counties. Rep. James Edming, who lives in Glen Flora in Rusk County could run for the seat if he chose because the current incumbent in the 68th no longer lives in the district boundaries.

For Medford-area residents there will be a bigger change as that area is moved into the 69th district. This includes the City of Medford, town of Medford, village of Stetsonville, towns of Little Black, Deer Creek, Browning and Goodrich. The 69th district also includes the entirety of Clark County with a small portion of Chippewa County and a small portion of Marathon county including Colby, Abbotsford, Dorchester and Athens.

Incumbent Rep. Donna Rozar, who is from Marshfield is now outside of the 69th district so that assembly seat will be open in the coming election.

On the Senate side, District 29 saw its borders become much more compact with Sen. Cory Tomczyk of Mosinee retaining that seat. Instead of extending into Taylor and Rusk counties, the 29th will instead cover most of Marathon County, the northern half of Wood County and parts of Portage, Shawano and Wood counties.

In place of being in the 29th district, this area will now be in the 23rd district which includes all of Taylor, Clark, Price, Rusk and Barron Counties as well as portions of Chippewa and Dunn Counties and the northwest portion of Marathon County including Colby, Abbotsford and Athens.

According to the governor’s office, the new maps are effective immediately.

New State Senate Map