The Atlantic

‘I Am Stunned’: Wisconsin Democrats’ Improbable Victory

A decisive liberal triumph in a hard-fought judicial race eased fears that Republicans would exploit the coronavirus to their advantage.
Source: Morry Gash / AP

Updated at 3:23 p.m. ET on April 14

How could Democrats win a statewide election that they had seemingly conceded—that they had tried in vain to prevent from even taking place?

That was the question in Wisconsin this morning, after the party celebrated the unlikely ouster of a conservative justice in a crucial race for a seat on the state’s highest court. With former Vice President Joe Biden now the presumptive Democratic nominee, following Senator Bernie Sanders’s withdrawal from the presidential race, the results of the party primary had become moot. The far more consequential race was the judicial election, and Judge Jill Karofsky’s defeat of incumbent Justice Daniel Kelly gave Democrats an important victory—delayed by nearly a week as a deluge of absentee ballots was counted—in what was essentially a trial run for the November election

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