Former Milwaukee State Representative Mandela Barnes handily won the Democratic primary for lieutenant governor over Sheboygan businessman Kurt Kober. With just over 40 percent of the vote counted, Barnes had a commanding 69 percent to 31 percent. He will become only the second African American nominated for the position by either major party in Wisconsin, after Mahlon Mitchell was nominated for the position in the 2012 recall election.
Barnes will join State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Evers on a ticket to take on Governor Scott Walker and Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch in the November general election.
“We feel really good,” Barnes said in an interview from the UAW Brewery Workers Hall in West Allis. “This is an example of what happens when you organize, when you talk about ways to improve peoples lives across the state.”
Barnes says he’s excited to campaign alongside Evers.
“I was ready to run with whoever came out on top. I’m ready to bring it home in November,” he said.
He believes the Evers-Barnes ticket can win in November through “Ideas, energy and organizing. I’ve been saying that since January.”