On April 2nd 2019, the voters of Madison, WI will get to choose their mayor for another four years. The deadline for candidates to submit their nomination papers and details has now closed.
There are six candidates, from a variety of backgrounds, which have thrown their hats into the ring. The primary election runs a few weeks prior to the election proper, on February 19th 2019, with voters having a good-sized field to deliberate over. Here’s who Mad City voters will have to choose from.
- Maurice Cheeks. Running on a platform of addressing social and economic inequality, Alderman Cheeks has served in public office since 2013. “What we need is a mayor that is committed to maximizing opportunities for everyone in every neighborhood and fighting for a better future for all our residents.” 
- Nick Hart. A local comedian who has previously run for the office of mayor, Hart brings his own unique take on running again, with a particular emphasis on engaging with those who tend to stay out of the political process. He states on his website that “I’m not getting involved in municipal politics for money, obviously. I’m getting involved because I’m interested in new ideas, and I’m running for mayor to exercise my civic duty.” 
- Tariana Pettaway. Pettaway is running as a non-partisan candidate, and is now on the ballot as a write-in candidate only. Pettaway, Madison’s first racial equity coordinator, fell afoul of the signature endorsement requirements needed for running for office but still wishes to remain on the ballot. 
- Satya Rhodes-Conway. The first candidate to announce themselves running for mayor, former alderman Rhodes-Conway is the current managing director for the Mayors Innovation Project. Rhodes-Conway states on her site that she is “…ready to lead on climate, racial equity, housing, transportation, and other issues that matter to working families.” 
- Raj Shukla. A candidate with a particular emphasis on the environment and economic sustainability, Shukla is executive director of River Alliance of Wisconsin. He is running on a platform of a social and environmental responsibility, including affordable housing and transportation. 
- Paul Soglin (incumbent). Returning to the mayoral office for the third time in 2011, racking up 22 years in the office, Soglin is arguably the most recognizable of all the candidates. Unsurprisingly then, some refer to him as “Mayor for Life.”  Soglin’s website notes a “…lifelong dedication to social justice, equal rights and, and making government responsive to the people it serves…” 
With the candidates now confirmed, the voters of Madison have just over a month to make up their mind when it comes to the primary vote on February 19th. Madison has a long history of mayoral elections with variety – 2019 is proving to be no different.
Written for Intellegere Project by: David Hewitt, MIS, BSc