Robert Turner and John Dickert will revive their fierce political rivalry this month after they both advanced to the May 5 general election to become Racine's next mayor.
The two candidates easily out-paced the 11-candidate field. Dickert led the way with 2,308 votes, or 23 percent, followed by Turner with 1,673, or 17 percent.
But it was Dickert's and Turner's night, setting the stage for a rematch of the 2002 primary election for Turner's Assembly seat. Dickert ran aggressive campaign seven years ago to try and break into the Legislature, but couldn't overcome Turner's strong base of support.
The election ripped the local Democratic Party in half, a rift that's arguably never healed.
Both candidates played down the past election at their victory parties Tuesday night.
"I have the experience, skills and know-how to put Racine back in place," he said.
Dickert, surrounded by upbeat supporters at Olde Madrid on Sixth Street, described Turner as a "strong candidate" with solid support in the community. But he was also quick to contrast himself with Turner's experience.
"Bob's the history, we're the future," Dickert said.
But the candidates' shared past is likely to revive old wounds, like allegations Dickert used a push poll in 2002 against Turner and that Turner's supporter intimidated businesses to take down Dickert signs. Then there's this incident involving Democratic Party furniture.
Turner won the campaign by 275 votes and has cruised to re-election ever since.