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Tuesday, November 4, 2014

 10:29 PM 

Republicans looking strong in top Assembly races

Republicans are in position to expand on their majority in the Assembly, though late returns could change that.

Insiders have been following a handful of top races in the chamber, and here's a quick rundown:

In northern Wisconsin's 75th, Republican Romaine Quinn was leading Dem Rep. Stephen Smith 56 percent to 44 percent with 65 percent of the vote in.

In central Wisconsin's 70th, Republican Nancy VanderMeer was leading Dem Rep. Amy Sue Vruwink 54-46 with 30 percent of the vote in.

In southwestern Wisconsin's open 51st, Dem Dick Cates was leading Republican Todd Novak 49 percent to 47 percent with 52 percent of the vote in.

In western Wisconsin's 68th AD, GOP Rep. Kathy Bernier was leading Dem Jeff Peck 52-48 with 42 percent of the vote in.

Those were considered the seats most likely to flip party control, and insiders were watching two other seats they thought would be an indicator of whether there was a GOP wave in Wisconsin.

In the Wausau-area 85th AD, Republican Dave Heaton was leading Dem Rep. Mandy Wright 53-47 with 60 percent of the vote in.

And in Oshkosh's 54th AD, Dem Rep. Gordon Hintz looked like he was on the verge of holding on. It's a strongly Dem seat, but Hintz was hit by outside groups for his arrest at a massage parlor and a threat he yelled at a GOP colleague on the Assembly floor. He was leading Republican Mark Elliott 52-48 with 89 percent of the vote in.

-- By JR Ross


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