Eau Claire, businesswoman Cooke, bids for Congress

Eau Claire, businesswoman Cooke, bids for Congress

The 3rd Congressional District covers a swath of counties along Wisconsin’s western border, including La Crosse and Eau Claire. Kind has held the seat for more than 24 years but announced in August he won’t seek reelection. EntertainmentWilliam Shatner, TV’s Capt. Kirk, blasts into spaceFilm TV workers union says strike to start next week’Squid Game’ strikes nerve in debt-ridden South KoreaTrisha Yearwood on making jerky, bacon straws and wontons

Cooke is a member of the state’s economic development agency board, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation, appointed by Democratic Gov. Tony Evers. She would be the first woman to represent the 3rd Congressional District should she win. Cooke joins state Sen. Brad Pfaff, of Onalaska, and political newcomer Brett Knudsen on the Democratic side, setting up an Aug. 9 primary. Republican Derrick Van Orden, a former Navy SEAL who was defeated by Kind in 2020, is running again and has support from former President Donald Trump and Republican House leadership. Cooke was raised on a dairy farm and says she understands the economic and social challenges facing small towns and rural communities. She owns and operates Red’s Mercantile and founded the Red Letter Grant in 2016, a nonprofit that supports female entrepreneurs.

The congressional district has been trending more conservative in recent elections and the race is expected to be one of the most competitive in 2022.

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