Rep. Mandela Barnes challenges fellow Democrat for Senate

Rep. Mandela Barnes challenges fellow Democrat for Senate
Wisconsin State Senate

Wisconsin Rep. Mandela Barnes is challenging fellow Milwaukee Democrat Lena Taylor for her Senate seat.

Barnes announced the run Monday morning, saying the area needs fresh, transformational leadership.

It’s unusual for Democratic senators to face primary challenges. According to Wisconsin’s Government Accountability Board, that last happened in 2010, when Chris Larson beat Jeff Plale for a Milwaukee Senate seat.

Barnes was elected to the Assembly in 2012. Taylor was elected to the Assembly in 2003 and the Senate in 2004.

She has had conflicts with her fellow Democratic legislators, particularly Larson, who had a public dispute with her in late March. Larson says Taylor started yelling at him and Taylor says Larson made offensive comments.

Taylor’s office didn’t respond to an email seeking comment. The primary is Aug. 9.

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