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Hagen, Paine advance in Superior mayor's race

Incumbent Mayor Bruce Hagen and Douglas County Board Supervisor Jim Paine are headed to the general election in Superior's mayoral race. Hagen received 55 percent of the vote and Paine received 14 percent as the top two finishers in Tuesday's pri...

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Incumbent Mayor Bruce Hagen and Douglas County Board Supervisor Jim Paine are headed to the general election in Superior’s mayoral race.

Hagen received 55 percent of the vote and Paine received 14 percent as the top two finishers in Tuesday’s primary election. They’ll face off in the April 7 general election.

Former Superior City Councilor Greg Mertzig (12 percent), City Councilor Mike Herrick (10 percent) and Superior Plan Commissioner Kalee Hermanson (8 percent) failed to advance from Tuesday’s primary.

Hagen thanked the voters, saying it was a “heartwarming night.” Paine said he was proud of the community, and thankful for his supporters.

The voter turnout was higher than normal for a primary and there’s been a lot of interest in the mayoral race, Hagen said.

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“We’re quite pleased. There’s a good spirit going into the general election,” he said.

Hagen is seeking his fifth, and he’s said his last, term as mayor. This is his second stint as mayor after being elected in 2011. He also served as Superior’s mayor from 1975-87, leaving for Madison to work in state government before retiring to Superior.

This year’s primary had good candidates with the desire and drive to serve Superior as mayor, Hagen said. His first campaign in 1975 was the last time he ran in a five-candidate primary, he said, and that year he received more votes than the other candidates combined.

Paine said this year’s primary featured five good candidates running five good campaigns. After a challenging primary, “we’re tremendously excited,” Paine said. He’s pleased with the campaign he’s run so far and excited for the general election, he said.

Paine said he decided to run for mayor to help Superior move into the future. He’s served on the Douglas County Board for five years.

Hagen said he expects a tough campaign from Paine for the general election. It’s going to be an interesting general election, Hagen said, adding, “Jim and I are opposites philosophically.”

Election results

Tuesday’s Superior mayoral primary

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Bruce Hagen 1,616

Jim Paine 421

Greg Mertzig 341

Mike Herrick 299

Kalee Hermanson 243

Related Topics: SUPERIOR
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