Wisconsin Democrat Katrina Shankland announces bid to unseat US Rep. Derrick Van Orden

Madison, Wisconsin
Posted at 4:07 PM, Oct 03, 2023

MADISON (AP) — A Democratic legislator from central Wisconsin announced Tuesday that she is running for U.S. Rep. Derrick Van Orden's seat next year.

State Rep. Katrina Shankland, of Stevens Point, joined a crowded field of Democratic challengers in western Wisconsin's 3rd Congressional District. Former La Crosse County Board Chair Tara Johnson, small-business owner Rebecca Cooke and Harvard Law School student Aaron Nytes all have announced plans to run.

Van Orden, a former Navy SEAL, narrowly defeated Democratic state Sen. Brad Pfaff to flip the seat for the GOP last year after longtime Democratic incumbent Ron Kind chose not to seek reelection. Pfaff has decided not to challenge Van Orden in 2024.

Van Orden was admonished in July by fellow Republicans and Democrats, who called on him to apologize after he yelled vulgarities at high school-aged U.S. Senate pages who were lying on the floor of the Capitol Rotunda taking pictures. Van Orden was outside of the Capitol during the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection, before he was elected to Congress.

His campaign didn't immediately respond to an email seeking comment on Shankland's candidacy.