by Benjamin Yount
The race for Wisconsin’s newly open 8th District Senate seat is coming into focus.
State Rep. Dan Knodl (R-Germantown) on Thursday announced he is running to replace State Sen. Alberta Darling (R-River Hills) who is retiring.
“Today, Wisconsin faces new challenges including runaway inflation, attacks on parental rights, and efforts to defund our police. I am running for the State Senate to ensure that the people of the 8th Senate District continue to have a proven common-sense voice in Madison,” Knodl said in a statement. “As State Senator, I will vote to support law enforcement, expand educational opportunities, roll back bureaucratic overreach, and pursue continued tax reform.”
Darling announced her retirement last week.
She served in the Wisconsin legislature since the early 1990s, spending most of her time in the Senate.
Knodl has represented about a third of Darling’s district in the Assembly since 2000. He has served as Assistant Majority Leader, Majority Caucus Chair, and currently chairs the Government Accountability and Oversight Committee.
State Rep. Deb Andraca (D-Whitefish Bay) the Democrat who also serves part of Darling’s district, last week announced she is not running.
“After a long battle to flip my Assembly seat in 2020, followed by a successful fight to prevent a supermajority in the Assembly in 2022, I want to spend some non-campaign time with my family – especially my younger daughter who will be leaving for college this fall,” Andraca said.
The other state representative in Darling’s district is State Rep. Janel Brandtjen (R-Menomonee Falls). She has not said what she plans to do about Darling’s seat. Brandtjen was recently kicked out of the Republican caucus in the Assembly, and is expected to lose her committee chairmanship in the next legislature.
Darling’s 8th Senate District includes portions of Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Washington, and Waukesha counties.
There’s been no official announcement as to just when the election to replace her will be. But it is expected to fall in line with next spring’s primary and general election dates.
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