MADISON, Wis – The challenger backed by Democrats and labor unions in a closely-watched Wisconsin election for a Supreme Court judge seat declared victory on Wednesday over a veteran judge backed by Republicans.
But a recount is virtually certain in the race that became a referendum on Republican Governor Scott Walker’s plan to curb the power of public sector unions.
With 100 percent of the state’s precincts reporting, JoAnne Kloppenburg edged out incumbent Justice David Prosser by a little over 200 votes, according to the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel newspaper and WTMJ-TV.
Kloppenburg, who garnered 740,090 votes to Prosser’s 739,886, claimed victory on Wednesday afternoon.
“We owe Justice Prosser our gratitude for his more than 30 years of public service,” Kloppenburg said. “Wisconsin voters have spoken and I am grateful for, and humbled by, their confidence and trust. I will be independent and impartial and I will decide cases based on the facts and the law.”
Prosser’s campaign director Brian Nemoir did not immediately respond to a call seeking comment. He has already said the campaign is preparing for a recount.
(Writing by James Kelleher; Additional reporting by Jeff Mayers and David Bailey; Editing by Greg McCune)
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