Liberal Jill Karofsky has defeated conservative incumbent Daniel Kelly in the Wisconsin Supreme Court election. Wisconsin held its presidential primary and statewide general elections on April 7, though the results were reported Monday.
Lisa Neubauer, a liberal who lost the race for Wisconsin Supreme Court against conservative Jim Hagedorn in 2019, held her seat for the Court of Appeals in District 2.
Kenosha County really tells the story in Wisconsin. As of writing, Karofsky carried the important swing county with 58.5%m or 15,020 votes. In 2019, Judge Hagedorn won it with 52%. Donald Trump won it in 2016.
Kelly ran behind Hagedorn almost across the board. Voting drop offs for the conservative candidate in Trempealeau, Jackson, Washington and other counties indicated a clear turnout edge for Democrats and liberals.
Of the 10 largest counties in Wisconsin, Karofsky slipped Winnebago by the slimmest of margins. But it was one more data point to suggest an outperformance.
On April 6, the Wisconsin Supreme Court ruled that Democratic Governor Tony Evers did not have the authority to delay in-person primary voting. The 4-2 ruling — split along ideological lines with 4 conservatives against and 2 liberals for— meant the primary would still be held in-person.