A state senator who left Wisconsin during the budget battle is facing an opponent with business experience. Dave Hansen is also running in a newly re-configured district.
Incumbent Democrat Dave Hansen represents northeastern Wisconsin's 30th District. He and Republican challenger John Macco met at a public debate this week. The two argued about things like cell phone taxes and personhood amendments. They also addressed issues like jobs. Specifically those created when Marinette Marine got a big navy contract.
Macco says Hansen is taking credit for a federal--not state--incentive package, "You don't sit on the military board. To take credit for ships that are being built up there is something you don't have title to take."
Hansen says state tax credits helped make Marinette Marine attractive to the Navy and helped secure the deal, "And I will take credit for working closely with Congressman Kagen and Congressman Stupak and Herb Kohl to make sure Marinette Marine got those contracts and remain competitive."
Hansen has held the seat since 2001. But re-districting chipped away at some neighborhoods. Charley Jacobs is a St. Norbert College political scientist. He says that may hurt Hansen, "He lost some of the sort of blue collar Green Bay and just the outskirts of Green Bay. Constituency that I think was more in his wheelhouse. Macco now has De Pere and Rockville. Those outlying areas and they tend to vote Republican they tend to be more conservative."
Third party groups are filling the airwaves with ads attacking both candidates--another issue the two argued about.