Four candidates filed enough valid signatures by Monday’s deadline to make the ballot in the special election to fill the 7th CD, setting up primaries for both Dems and Republicans in the northern Wisconsin seat.

On the GOP side, Republicans Jason Church, an aide to U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, and state Sen. Tom Tiffany, of Minocqua, filed enough signatures to qualify for the Feb. 18 primary.

For Dems, Tricia Zunker, president of the Wausau School Board and an associate justice of the Ho-Chunk Nation Supreme Court, and businessman Lawrence Dale, who lived in Michigan at the time he announced plans to run, made the cut. Dale listed a post office box in Eagle River as his mailing address on his filing.

GOP businessman Michael Opela, of Edgar, also filed papers. But the 800 valid signatures the commission listed was short of the 1,000 needed to qualify for the ballot.

Likewise, Douglas Lindee, of Deer Park, filed to run as a Constitution Party candidate. But his 580 valid signatures also was short of the mark needed.

The winners of the Feb. 18 primaries will advance to the May 12 special election to replace former GOP U.S. Rep. Sean Duffy, who resigned in March to spend more time with his family ahead of the birth of his ninth child.

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