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Democrats running in 3rd District Congressional race talk issues at UWL forum



The next Congress will be elected six months from now, but a primary for the 3rd District House seat in western Wisconsin is only three months away, in August.

Three Democrats running for their party nomination for Congress took part in a forum at UW-La Crosse on Wednesday.

Katrina Shankland is a long-time state representative whose father is an immigrant, and she calls for bipartisan reform to assist people coming to the U.S. Shankland has criticized Republicans, including current Congressman Derrick Van Orden, for failing to pass immigration bills.

“We have seen folks like Donald Trump tell Derrick Van Orden, hey, oppose a bipartisan border control and protection deal, and he said, all right, I’ll put America’s interests at risk,” said Shankland.

The ability to run for office also was discussed at the forum. Candidates Rebecca Cooke and Eric Wilson both spoke about balancing a political campaign with holding down full-time jobs.

“It’s difficult for regular people to run for Congress,” said Cooke, who came in second in the Democratic primary for the 3rd District seat in 2022. “Now, more than ever, I think we need regular folks stepping off the sidelines, teachers, waitresses, bus drivers, representing us in the halls of D.C..” Cooke is employed part-time as a waitress.

“We’re putting up barriers that not everyone has access, ” said Wilson, “and we’re not getting necessarily the best candidates because of how our system is structured.”

Wilson said he supports public financing of campaigns, and Shankland wants to control the corporate backing of politicians.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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  1. Walden

    May 2, 2024 at 12:34 am

    The map illustration: this is the new district map. It is clearly gerrymandered in favor of Dems.

    The issues: irrelevant. All these idiots will vote the same way; the way they are instructed to vote by Biden. No independent thought encouraged, required or allowed.

    So if you want autos and homes and groceries that you cannot afford, more illegals coming across the boarder, another half-million or so drug deaths in a second Biden administration, vote Democrat.

  2. walden

    May 2, 2024 at 12:42 am

    The Presidential Debate Commission is delaying the debates between Biden and Trump until well after early voting has begun. Reason given for the delay is “democracy.”

  3. Kevin

    May 2, 2024 at 7:40 am

    I call bullshit on the bipartisan immigration bill.

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