KRONENWETTER (WAOW)-- We now have a much clearer picture of how the 29th state senate recall race will shape up. Republican State Representative Jerry Petrowski of Marathon has announced he will challenge Democratic State Representative Donna Seidel of Wausau. After a year of contentious battles over collective bargaining rights, the recall in the 29th, will determine the majority party in the State Senate.
The recall election targeted Republican Pam Galloway of Wausau. She held the seat until last week, when she abruptly announced her decision to step down for personal reasons. Petrowski says he talked with his family, then decided to step up to make a run for the seat, "Every election I have ever been in has always been tough. We are going to do what we need to do."
He faces State Representative Donna Seidel of Wausau. She told Newsline 9 she welcomes the opportunity to debate Petrowski, "He has the same record and supports the same issues at Pam Galloway, who voters wanted recalled."
It's a crucial race to determine the majority part in the Senate which is deadlocked at 16 on each side.
The recall takes place in May or June, depending on whether any other candidates enter the race, resulting in the need for a primary.
If Seidel loses the Senate bid, she says she will not seek election to her Assembly seat in the 85th District. Petrowski says he has not decided what he will do if he loses.
Here is the text from his official Press Release:
Petrowski Announces Bid for 29th Senate Seat
MARATHON (PRESS RELEASE) - Representative Jerry Petrowski (R-Stettin) announced today that he will seek election in the 29th Senate District. Former Senator Pam Galloway announced her resignation last week Friday citing family health issues. Representative Petrowski reported that he had been contacted by hundreds of people in just the past few days. "Members of this community are very passionate and I'm honored that they have taken the time to share their thoughts" replied Petrowski. "The outpouring of support from the local community has been overwhelming and humbling."
As a life-long resident of the 29th Senate District, Jerry Petrowski expressed deep pride for the area he has always called home. "I first decided to run for the State Assembly because I wanted to make a difference and be able to help the people of this community", Petrowski said. "That is the reason I stand before you today. I believe that as your State Senator, I will have the opportunity to have an even greater impact on our community and our families here in Central and North Central Wisconsin. Together we can make this area an even better place to live, work, raise a family and retire."
"This election shouldn't be about partisan politics," Petrowski proclaimed, "it should be about how we best move forward by working together. We need to focus on keeping the jobs we have and do everything we can to create additional jobs. We need to continue to balance the state budget and protect our taxpayers by making government live within its means and by finding ways to do more with less. We need to ensure that our families receive the health care they need and guarantee that our children receive the best in education."
Jerry Petrowski has been married to his wife, Ellen for 38 years and has four adult children. He was originally elected to the Assembly in 1998 and has over 30 years of experience as a small business owner, ginseng, dairy and beef farmer. Petrowski proudly served 6 years in the U.S. Army Reserves.
Representative Petrowski currently serves as the Chairman of the Assembly Transportation Committee, and a voting member of other committees, including Public Health and Public Safety, Rural Economic Development and Rural Affairs, and Veterans and Military Affairs. He also serves on the Governor's Council on Highway Safety, Transportation Projects Commission, Midwest Interstate Passenger Rail Commission, and the Rustic Roads Advisory Board. The 29th Senate district consists of Marathon, Price, Rusk, and Taylor Counties along with parts of Sawyer, Shawano and Portage Counties.