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Ryan is running, Thomas isn't in 1st District

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Mike DuPre'
July 9, 2008
— The race for Wisconsin’s 1st Congressional District seat will be different this year because of who is not running.

After seven unsuccessful campaigns, Democrat Jeff Thomas of Janesville is not seeking his party’s nomination to try to unseat Republican incumbent Paul Ryan, also a Janesville resident.


“I just decided not to run this year,” Thomas, 68, said this morning. “There are some good people running this year. I probably will run again. I hope to.”


Thomas defeated four fellow Democrats in a 2006 primary but lost for the fourth time to Ryan.


Ryan announced Monday that he is seeking re-election to a sixth term.


Thomas said he is supporting Mike Hebert, one of his primary opponents in 2006 and one of four Democratic candidates registered this year with the Elections Division of the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board.


The Democratic primary to pick Ryan’s challenger will be Tuesday, Sept. 9.


“He works real hard,” Thomas said of Hebert, a former factory worker from Kenosha. “I think he’ll do well against Paul Ryan. Ryan’s almost impossible to beat, but nothing’s impossible.”


The other Democrats running are:


-- Paulette Garin, Kenosha, a piano teacher, certified public accountant and newcomer to congressional politics. She has scheduled a listening session for 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Monday at the Janesville Senior Center.


-- Marge Krupp, Pleasant Prairie, a former manager with Abbott Laboratories of North Chicago, Ill. She already has raised more than $100,000 in campaign funds.


-- John Mogk, Kenosha, a recent entrant to the race who has been active in the Democratic Party in Kenosha and Racine counties.


Also running is Libertarian Joseph Kexel of Kenosha, a self-employed information technology consultant.


Meanwhile in the 2nd Congressional District, incumbent Democrat Tammy Baldwin faces challenges from both a Republican and a Democrat.


Daniel Peter Theron of Madison, a math professor and software designer, is the GOP challenger.


Dave St. Amant of Madison is challenging Baldwin for the Democrats’ nomination. He could not be reached for comment, but press reports indicate he believes Baldwin has not been outspoken enough on a number of issues, including impeachment of the president and support for Barack Obama.


David Redick of Madison had filed a campaign finance report to run as a Republican against Baldwin, but he didn’t register to be on the ballot by Tuesday’s deadline.



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