MADISON, Wisconsin (AP) — Wisconsin Democrats are challenging paperwork filed by Donald Trump’s preferred candidate for governor to run on technical grounds in the GOP primaries.
The Democratic State Party said Sunday that construction company co-owner Tim Michels failed to include his correct mailing address on nomination forms, invalidating thousands of signatures. But Michels’ campaign dismissed the complaint as frivolous.
“This challenge demonstrates that Donald Trump’s candidate in the Republican gubernatorial primary, Tim Michels, has only 345 valid signatures to run on the ballot,” Democratic Party chairman Ben Wikler said. The state needs 2,000 signatures to become governor.
Michels’ campaign acknowledged that some of the nomination forms list his physical address in the village of Chenequa rather than his official mailing address in the nearby town of Hartland, but it said all the forms include the postal address of the campaign’s mailbox.
“Tony Evers and his insider allies are working feverishly to prevent me from beating him in November,” Michels said in a statement. “It’s no surprise that they launched a frivolous complaint in an effort to keep me from the vote just days after I was approved by President Trump. They will not succeed.”
Michels, who entered the race in late April, faces former Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch, state representative Tim Ramthun and business adviser Kevin Nicholson in the controversial GOP primary on Aug. 9. The winner of that race will face Democratic incumbent Evers.
The state’s bipartisan election commission will discuss Michels’ candidacy challenge at its meeting on Friday.
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