The League of Women Voters of Dane County has published the latest edition of Candidates' Answers, an independent and nonpartisan voters guide to the office seekers in the primary and general elections every spring and fall. Unlike previous cycles, though, this particular set of questions-and-answers offered to all candidates is being published online rather than in print.
"Because of financial considerations," reports the League an announcement about its new 2008 fall primary guide, "the Dane County Candidates' Answers for the primary will not be published in Isthmus, although it will for the November general election.
This online guide includes information about the candidates' names, addresses, and party affiliation, along with their responses (or lack thereof) to the seventh and final question offered by the League in this cycle. The question is: "In 100 words or less, please describe your particular priorities for your term in office and your specific qualifications to effectively address those issues."
Five races for the Wisconsin Assembly are covered in this online edition, with the League sending questions to candidates running for seats in District 37, District 46, District 47, District 80, and District 81. All five districts, which cover the lion's share of suburban and rural Dane County, are seeing primary races between two and six candidates.
The first two, Districts 37 and 46, cover the southeastern quadrant of the county; none of the five Republican candidates running for the chance to represent them did not reply. There was bipartisan a response from candidates running in District 47, which covers the northern edge of the county; both Democrats, one of the four Republicans, and the lone independent running for the seat replied. One of the two Democrats running in District 80 replied, meanwhile, in their bid to represent a southwestern strip of the county.
It's District 81 that's the highest profile race, though, as six Democrats vie for a shot to succeed Dave Travis in representing portions of north Madison as well as Waunakee and the towns of Burke, Westport, Springfield, Berry, and Black Earth. Five candidates responded: Eric Englund, Tim Kiefer, John W. Laubmeier, Kelda Helen Roys, and Justin Sargeant; one, Peng Her, did not.
Answers to the first six questions by responding candidates can be found in the statewide Candidates' Answers has permission to do so as long as no answers are altered in any way and equal treatment is given to all candidates for a particular office."
The fall primary is on Tuesday, September 9, with polls open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Madison residents can find more information about voter registration and polling place locations in an online guide provided by the city clerk's office, and those in greater Dane County can access similar information provided by the county clerk's office.
A print version of the Candidates' Answers will return in advance of the November 4 general election, and will be published as an insert in Isthmus on Thursday, October 23.