Eau Claire (WQOW)- On Tuesday night, former Wisconsin Governor Tommy Thompson won the Republican GOP primary in his quest for a U.S. Senate seat.
Thompson grabbed 34 percent of the vote. Businessman Eric Hovde was close behind with 31 percent. Former Congressman Mark Neumann and Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald finished a distant 3rd and 4th.
Republicans say in Thompson's time as governor, he was able to work well with both political parties to get things done. Democrats argue the work he's done since serving as the state's governor hasn't been in the best interest of the people.
"He's got a lot of name recognition, but he hasn't been governor for quite some time and in the time since he's been governor, he's been doing a lot of lobbying for large special interest groups," says Eau Claire County Democratic Party Spokesman Beverly Wickstrom. "Some special interest groups for example which have been sending jobs overseas."
"It's worth noting that for the vast majority of Tommy's time as governor, the Republicans didn't control both houses of the state legislature," explains Eau Claire County Republican Party Chair Brian Westrate. "So Tommy Thompson knows how to get the job done and how to get the job done while working with Democrats."
Thompson will face off in November against Democrat Tammy Baldwin. The senate seat, vacated by retiring Herb Kohl, has been held by Democrats for more than 50 years. Baldwin has invited Thompson to take part in three debates. No word yet on if Thompson has accepted that offer.
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