Zach Vruwink wins Wis. Rapids mayoral race - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Zach Vruwink wins Wis. Rapids mayoral race

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WISCONSIN RAPIDS (WAOW) -- Mayor Zach Vruwink has defeated former Mayor Mary Jo Carson in the Wisconsin Rapids mayoral race.

With 100 percent of the precincts reporting, Vruwink had 69 percent of the vote compared to 31 percent for Carson.

Carson conceded to Vruwink Tuesday evening after learning she wasn't doing well in the returns, despite the fact that no precincts had reported at the time.

"When you do something like this there's two sides of the coin. You can win and you can lose. You know that going in. Usually you go do this because you have a point you wanna make," said Carson after she conceded. "My reason was disagreements with some of the things that were happening in the city. I had a chance to express them and I did so now we'll move on.:

Carson retired as mayor in 2012 after six years in office. At that time she backed Vruwink in the election. He won at the age of 24. 

Now, Vruwink says it's time to move the city forward. 

"Recognizing that Wisconsin Rapids does have a lot of assets and we have a story to tell, so getting that told and getting that known is a top priority of mine," said Vruwink.

But, this race came with some 11th hour drama. Vruwink became the subject of a complaint last week after posting a picture of his primary election ballot on Facebook. Doing so constitutes election fraud, according to state statute. Vruwink later took down the photo and said he didn't realize he had broken the law. The Wood County district attorney said he will bring in a special prosecutor to determine if Vruwink will face any charges.

"It really isn't anything I'm focused on at this point and I hope not in the future. I hope that the investigation can be completed and we can move forward from there," said Vruwink.

Vruwink is the youngest mayor in city history and says he looks forward to helping Wisconsin Rapids progress as a city as he begins a new term as mayor.

Newsline 9 will have complete coverage of this race Wednesday morning on Wake Up Wisconsin.
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