• WisPolitics


Tuesday, August 16, 2011

 10:35 PM 

Wirch says hard work, anger at Walker fueled win

State Sen. Bob Wirch credited a combination of retail politics, anger at Gov. Scott Walker and a lack of resources for his GOP challenger in today’s win.

Wirch, D-Pleasant Prairie, also noted Republican Jonathan Steitz is the third attorney he’s beaten in the Kenosha-area district, including now-RNC Chair Reince Priebus in 2004.

“I love it when they put lawyers up against me, especially corporate lawyers,” Wirch told WisPolitics.com in an interview from his Election Night party.

With 100 percent of the vote in, Wirch had 25,541 votes, or 58 percent, to 18,838 votes, or 42 percent for Steitz, according to unofficial returns.

Wirch also told WisPolitics he will make a decision on his political future within the next month. Under the map Republicans approved last month, Wirch has been drawn out of the 22nd SD for the 2012 election. Barring a successful challenge to the map, Wirch will either have to run against GOP Sen. Van Wanggaard in a new district that largely includes the rural areas of Kenosha and Racine counties or move into a new district that is most comprised of the cities of Kenosha and Racine.

“I’m going to talk to my family and staff and will be making a decision certainly within the next month on my future,” he said.

Appearing on “UpFront with Mike Gousha” this weekend, Wirch demurred when asked whether the recall elections were proper. But he said tonight they were worth it and sent a clear message about the anger and frustration in the electorate and said he hoped it would set a different path for the Legislature over the remainder of the session.

“I think there will be a different tone,” he said. “I believe even the governor is talking a more moderate way because he’s worried about being recalled. Maybe they’ll even follow up that moderate talk with some moderate action.”

-- By JR Ross

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