Democrat Shilling reacts to win over Republican Kapanke

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LA CROSSE, WI (WEAU)--Just after 10 o’clock on Tuesday night, Representative Jennifer Shilling was announced the winner of the 32nd Senate District Recall race at the Best Western Riverfront Hotel in La Crosse.

"Tonight, Wisconsin citizens have found their voice and held their elected officials accountable for their actions," Shilling told the crowd during her victory speech.

Shilling says her win last night was due to the hundreds of people who have shown their support as volunteers on the campaign trail and at the polls.

“This is, in Western Wisconsin, a strong victory, people rejecting the strong partisanship, rejecting the extreme agenda that they’ve been pushing through," Shilling said.

Shilling says as senator, she’ll work to help the middle class and bring jobs back to the state.

“We need to invest in our education system," she said. "We need to make sure that health care is available for our seniors, our families, our seniors, our retirees.”

Shilling says as she makes the transition to state senator, she’ll continue to listen to people in the district and work with both political parties.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Democrat Jennifer Shilling has defeated Republican Sen. Dan Kapanke of La Crosse in one of six recall elections targeting Republican incumbents.

She is the first Democrat to win on Tuesday, with three Republicans holding on to their seats. Two other races were too close to call.

Unofficial results show Shilling captured 55 percent of the vote compared with 45 percent for Kapanke.

Shilling's win is a big one for Democrats as they try to take majority control away from Republicans. Democrats need to pick up three seats. But two Democratic incumbents face recalls next week.

Kapanke has been in the Senate since 2004. Shilling was first elected to the state Assembly in 2000.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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