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Assembly District 64: McGuire vs. Hibsch rematch

RACINE AND KENOSHA — The 2022 general election race for the 64th Assembly District is a rematch between Democrat Tip McGuire and Republican Ed Hibsch. The election is this Tuesday (Nov. 8).

The 64th District straddles Racine and Kenosha Counties. The Racine County portion includes portions of the City of Racine’s south side (wards 31, 36-38, 40-41 and 43), a portion of the Village of Mount Pleasant (wards 19 and 21-23) and all of the Village of Elmwood Park. In Kenosha County, the district covers the City of Kenosha’s north side and the eastern portion of the Village of Somers.

McGuire, 35, of Kenosha, was elected to the Wisconsin Assembly in an April 2019 special election and to a full two-year term in 2020. A lawyer, he has worked as a special prosecutor for Kenosha County and as a Milwaukee County assistant district attorney. He also was a legislative aide to former Rep. Peter Barca of Kenosha, a Democrat who previously represented the 64th District. Barca is now the state Department of Revenue secretary.

In the Assembly, McGuire has served on the Consumer Protection, Criminal Justice and Public Safety, State Affairs, and the Ways and Means committees.

Hibsch, 64, of Somers, operates EWH Transportation, a limousine service. He has not previously held public office. He ran unsuccessfully against McGuire for the 64th Assembly District seat in 2020.

The Racine County Eye last week presented both candidates with the same set of questions.

Hibsch could not be reached via email or telephone. McGuire responded via email.

Following are McGuire’s responses (edited for grammar, spelling and punctuation).

Tip McGuire

Why are you running for this office?

McGuire: Serving my home community in the Legislature has been the greatest honor of my life. I am running to fight for the needs of my neighbors and my community. To me, that means ensuring people that work hard can get ahead instead of treading water or worse. That’s why I worked across the aisle to pass key portions of my Main Street Recovery package, which provided tax relief to working families and small businesses. Working across the aisle with other legislators to ensure that working people can get a fair shake is an important part of the job, and I’m proud that I was able to find success and make a difference for working families and small businesses.

As a former prosecutor, I believe that everyone in our community should feel safe in their home. I’ve been honored to serve as the ranking member on the Assembly Committee on Criminal Justice and Public Safety, working to protect our community by ensuring our local law enforcement has the tools and resources they need to combat and prevent crime. In addition, I introduced legislation with the Attorney General that was the largest legislative investment in public safety this session – $115 million in total – with investments going to recruiting and retaining well-trained law enforcement, law enforcement training, support services for victims of crime , as well as mental health programming.

What are the main issues/concerns you’re hearing from district residents?

McGuire: Working families and small businesses in our community are having trouble making ends meet. At a time when our state’s budget situation has never been better, I believe it’s time to get that taxpayer money working for the taxpayers who need help.

In addition, it’s critical that we work to address violence in our community. The Safer Wisconsin plan – a $115 million dollar investment in public safety – takes a comprehensive approach to these challenges by providing funding in such key areas as recruiting and retaining police officers, community policing programs that link our community with law enforcement, victim support services and mental health programming.

I also hear concerns all the time about the extremism that animates an increasing amount of the Republican Party. Whether it’s the criminalization of abortion without exceptions for rape and incest, the election denialism that led to January 6, or the dangerous push for guns on school grounds, people in our community are looking for someone to stand up for common sense for a change.

If elected, what priority do you have and what will you do to address it?

McGuire: My top priority in the legislature has always been building a strong pathway to economic security and the middle class. Working families and small businesses are the backbone of our state, and we need a government that supports them. I am always looking for ways for our state to focus on rebuilding a strong middle class for ourselves and the generations to come.

For working families to succeed, we need safe and healthy neighborhoods, and as a former assistant district attorney, public safety is deeply important to me. This past session, I worked closely with Attorney General Josh Kaul to advance the Safer Wisconsin package – a $115 million public safety investment – to ensure our communities have the resources they need to prevent and combat crime while supporting victims. I’ll be working to convince Republicans across the aisle to support this critical investment into law enforcement, victim services, and safe communities.

Election Day

Election Day is Tuesday, Nov. 8, 2022. To check your voter registration and find your polling location, visit myvote.wi.gov. The polls open at 7 am and close at 8 pm Follow local election results with Racine County Eye.

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