The nation’s longest serving state legislator will not be a candidate for re-election this fall. State Senator Fred Risser (D-Madison) broke the news in a press release Friday afternoon.
Risser is 92, and in his 64th year as a Wisconsin legislator, the release said. He is the longest serving state or national legislator in the nation’s history, and the last World War II veteran serving in either the state or nation’s legislatures.
After 64 years representing Madison in the State Assembly and State Senate, I have decided not the stand for re-election. pic.twitter.com/RtfJymSFYe
— Senator Fred Risser (@SenRisser) March 26, 2020
Risser was elected to the Assembly in 1956 and to the Senate in 1962. He has served as Senate Minority Leader and 25 years as Senate President.
Risser has worked with 13 different governors – 7 Democrats and 6 Republicans – and has never missed a legislative roll call.
Risser’s announcement opens the way for a wide-open primary in the heavily Democratic 26th Senate District. Also on Friday, state Representative Chris Taylor (D-Madison) announced she won’t seek reelection after a decade of service in the Assembly.