Mark Spreitzer wins Democratic primary in 45th Assembly race
BELOIT—Voters elected Beloit City Council President Mark Spreitzer over fellow Councilwoman Sheila De Forest in Tuesday’s Democratic primary in the 45th Assembly race.
“I want to thank the voters for having faith in me and certainly want to thank Sheila for a spirited and positive campaign and raising some important issues,” he said.
With no Republicans running in the November election, he likely will take over for incumbent Rep. Janis Ringhand, D-Evansville, who ran in the Democratic primary for the 15th Senate seat.
Spreitzer, 27, garnered 1,993 votes while De Forest, 45, had 1,690.
Ringhand endorsed Spreitzer, who easily won in her area—the town of Union and city of Evansville, 559-247. De Forest, however, won the city of Beloit, 730-690.
Spreitzer said he will remain as president of the Beloit City Council through the end of the year, but he didn’t commit to plans after he takes office in January. He said his city council term ends in April, and he does not plan to seek re-election.
Spreitzer, who is the assistant director of Beloit College Alumni & Parent Relations and Annual Support, said he has priorities on the council that he wants to finish.
Since he won’t take office until January, he said he would be traveling around the 45th District so residents can know their next representative.
His top priorities in the Assembly include discussion on passing the next state budget, and making sure the budget funds local priorities, such as schools and municipalities, he said.
A gubernatorial victory in November by Democratic candidate Mary Burke would be huge, he said.
“It will give a lot more leverage, even if the Democrats are still the minority,” he said.
A Burke win would mean shared governance instead of one-party rule, and Democrats would have more of a voice, he said.
“I certainly hope to be in a position to work with Mary to get her ideas passed,” he said.
Spreitzer graduated from Beloit College with a degree in political science and worked for former U.S. Sen. Russ Feingold's 2010 campaign. He has been on the city council since April 2011.