Sen. Jim Holperin and Kim Simac face off in forum - WAOW - Newsline 9, Wausau News, Weather, Sports

Sen. Jim Holperin and Kim Simac face off in forum

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EAGLE RIVER (WAOW) -- Democratic Senator Jim Holperin and Republican Challenger Kim Simac went head to head during their first debate. Just one week away from recall elections State Senator Jim Holperin and Challenger Kim Simac came face to face at a debate in Eagle River hosted by radio station WRJO.

"We are hurting in the Northwoods, we have serious issues up here," said Simac.

"It is unfortunate that Mrs. Simac and I have not appeared together in any forum, or on any media together before tonight," said Holperin.

The two exchanged jabs about progress, and economic development in the Northwoods.

Simac spearheaded the recall earlier this year when Holperin left Madison with the other 13 democratic senators to delay voting on collective bargaining legislation.

"We are here now because for three weeks in February when we needed it the most, our senator wasn't there," said Simac.

"Hundreds maybe thousands of voters will vote against me next week specifically because I left the state. Hundreds maybe thousands will also vote for me because I left the state," said Holperin.

Newsline 9 talked with both candidates before the debate who said their goals were to create jobs in the Northwoods.

"They need jobs, they need less taxation and regulation. And then that would help bring some better days ahead here for the 12th district," said Simac.

"I've talked throughout the campaign about my record of support for economic development here in northern Wisconsin, and job creation," said Holperin.

They both said this final week before the election is crucial.

"For the rest of the week I'll still be attending events, doing a little bit of door to door, and going to talk with the media," said Holperin.

"Every day for the next week, like we've been doing for the past few weeks is we're going to get up and go out, and see as many voters as we can," said Simac.

The questions were submitted by viewers and local media outlets, and the candidates were not given those questions before the forum. The Recall Election is Tuesday, August 16th.

Online Reporter: Courtney Fasano

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