Wisconsin Democratic Secretary of Condition La Follette resigns

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Wisconsin’s longtime Democratic Secretary of Condition Doug La Follette resigned on Friday, stating he was leaving with a “heavy heart” a few months into his 11th consecutive term in business right after he watched the office environment be stripped of its energy about the earlier 50 decades.

Gov. Tony Evers appointed previous Treasurer Sarah Godlewski, who ran for U.S. Senate very last calendar year but misplaced in the key, to fill out the four-12 months phrase. Wisconsin’s secretary of point out has not been in charge of elections because 1974 and has virtually no formal duties.

“It is with a hefty heart that I post my resignation,” the 82-year-outdated La Follette said in his resignation letter. “After several decades of annoyance, I’ve decided that I never want to shell out the up coming three and a half decades hoping to operate an office without ample methods and staffing degrees.”

He did not quickly return a telephone concept remaining in search of comment. In his resignation letter, La Follette mentioned “I should now target on my personal needs.”

La Follette received reelection in November around a Republican who desired to change election duties to the office.

Evers, also a Democrat, thanked La Follette for his decades of services and named Godlewski to swap him.

“In a important situation that has found no turnover in many years, sustaining continuity with a chief who’s ready and dedicated to fulfilling this office’s constitutional obligations could not be a lot more important—and there’s no one additional uniquely qualified or far better suited for the task than Sarah,” Evers mentioned in a assertion.

Godlewski, 41, was 1-yr-outdated when La Follette began his recent consecutive operate as secretary of state.

Godlewski explained she was humbled by the appointment. She turns into the third woman to keep the situation in point out history. She served one particular phrase as treasurer, from 2018 to 2022. She dropped the Senate major to Mandela Barnes, who went on to drop to Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson.

“To come to be just the 3rd girl in our state’s heritage to keep this workplace is the honor of a life span,” Godlewski mentioned. “I know how critical this function is and my duties are, and I’m seeking forward to having to perform.”

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La Follette — a distant relative of “Fighting” Bob La Follette, a progressive governor and 1924 presidential candidate — was to start with elected secretary of condition in 1974. Soon after a failed attempt for lieutenant governor in 1978, he won the office environment in 1982 and has received reelection 10 times.

Republicans have slowly stripped the business office of almost all its duties and workers and relegated La Follette to a cramped office in the Capitol basement. Nonetheless, due to the fact the 2020 presidential election, Republicans have been mulling shifting oversight of elections to the secretary of condition.


This story corrects the number of periods La Follette has been reelected from nine to 10. It also clarifies that La Follette was in his 11th consecutive time period when he resigned.

The Fort Information