In Wisconsin’s 7th Assembly District, “Democratic” State Rep. Peggy Krusick has a challenger in the form of Scott Dettman, who had been rumored as a challenger to State Rep. Jeff Stone before moving into Krusik’s district. Dettman was last spotted running the failed 2008 campaign of Glen Brower, who tried to unseat Republican State Rep. Mark Honadel in the 21st Assembly District. I don’t know much (actually, anything) about Dettman, as his campaign website is blank, other than a link to his ActBlue fundraising page. Presumably Dettman will run to the left of Rep. Krusick as a progressive candidate, in the same manner that Milwaukee County Supervisor Chris Larson is running to the left of incumbent Democratic State Sen. Jeff Plale in the 7th Senate District.
However, Dettman’s candidacy against a Democratic incumbent is interesting for one important reason: Dettman has received the support of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin (DPW), while Chris Larson was told by Democratic Party insiders not to challenge Sen. Plale. I’ve confirmed Dettman’s campaign has received “tacit support of the DPW and the county party,” as well as receiving access to the Democratic Party of Wisconsin’s “votebuilder” database, and I’ve also confirmed that County Supervisor Larson has not received access to the “votebuilder” database. I tried to get some clarification from the DPW on their involvement with or support of Dettman’s campaign, but I wasn’t able to get a straight answer from anyone within the DPW.
While the Democratic Party of Wisconsin certainly has the right to pick and choose which Democratic candidates it will or won’t support, it’s mind-boggling to me that the DPW would choose to support Scott Dettman in his primary challenge to Rep. Krusick while denying the same measure of support to Chris Larson, who’s unquestionably a more qualified and proven candidate than Dettman, and who it could be argued would be a far more valuable asset to the Democratic Party as the State Senator in the 7th District than Sen. Plale.