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Lena Taylor Handily Defeats Mandela Barnes in State Senate Primary

Democratic state Sen. Lena Taylor easily turned back a challenge from another lawmaker, state Rep. Mandela Barnes. Taylor has held the north side Milwaukee seat for 12 years and garnered 61 percent of the vote in Tuesday’s primary.

The results came in quickly – at the Big Easy restaurant north of downtown. Then the crowd cheered as state Sen. Lena Taylor took the podium to claim victory.

“The people said honesty matters. The people said someone who is visible and serves the people, that matters,” Taylor says.

Taylor says major issues in the primary were jobs and crime. One heavy hitter who endorsed Taylor is Milwaukee County Executive Chris Abele. He says he admires Taylor’s ability to reach across party lines.

“Every American, right and left, is just sick of seeing all the fighting and what they want to see is people getting things done. Lena Taylor has gotten more than 100 bills passed and we need more of that. Lena doesn’t have a compelling need to hate people who have a different letter behind their name,” Abele says.

There were no other candidates in the race, so Taylor will be unopposed in November.

Marti was a reporter with WUWM from 1999 to 2021.
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