Wisc. GOP Looks to Pick Off a Dem Today
Last of the recall elections held today
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 16, 2011 8:39 AM CDT
Wisconsin State Sen. Jim Holperin, D-Conover, talks outside the Clock Tower Resort in Rockford, Ill. on Thursday, Feb. 17, 2011.   (AP Photo/The Rockford Register Star, Scott Morgan)

(Newser) – The Wisconsin GOP already claimed victory in last week's Republican recall races by maintaining control of the state Senate, but they want more: namely, Democrat Jim Holperin's seat. Holperin is one of two Democratic state senators up for recall today, and Republicans think they can pick him off, reports Politico. "These two races are an important opportunity for voters to weigh in on whether their elected representative should be able to keep their job after refusing to represent their interests in Madison," says Wisconsin's GOP spokesperson.

Democrats still believe Holperin will win against Tea Partier Kim Simac, but the race is narrowing. A GOP-leaning pollster finds Holperin up only 2%, while a Daily Kos/Public Policy Polling poll finds him up by 14 points. "Jim Holperin ... was always the most vulnerable Democrat,” a Daily Kos rep acknowledges, but he adds that Simac appears to be "turning off independents." The other Democrat facing recall, State Sen. Robert Wirch, is expected to win easily. Since the Democrats did not win a Senate majority last week, today's elections lose some of their drama, notes the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel. Even so, if they manage to keep the balance at 17-16 rather than giving up either one of the two seats, they could force bipartisan compromise.
 

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