Billings wins 95th Assembly seat

LA CROSSE, Wis. — Democrats have retained a long-held Wisconsin Assembly seat.

Jill Billings defeated Republican Dave Drewes in a special election for the 95th Assembly seat.

With all 19 precincts reporting, Billings beat Drewes 5,938 votes to 2,247 votes. That’s 72%  of the vote.

“I think my positive campaign resonated with voters,” said Billings.

“It feels awesome. I’m so excited and honored to be elected and have people in this district put their faith in me,” she added.

Billings says her top priority in Madison will be helping to grow jobs in Madison. She sees the state’s technical school system as a good place to start.


“I think we need to help with job creation…where employers will have the skilled workforce they need,” said Billings.

Billings, the vice-chair of the La Crosse County Board, says she will serve out the remainder of her term through April. She says she hasn’t decided yet whether she’ll run for her board seat again.

News 8’s crew was with Drewes when he called Billings at around 9:00 p.m. to concede.

VIDEO: Drewes concedes 95th Assembly race to Billings

“Well, I’m disappointed. I guess I felt that time was too short to really get the message out. I really feel that I had the right message and I was the right candidate. But I wasn’t able to convince enough voters to agree with me,” said Drewes.

He says right now he does not plan to run for office again.

The special election was called after Democrat Jennifer Shilling won a recall election for the 32nd State Senate seat over Republican Dan Kapanke.

Shilling had held the 95th Assembly seat since 2001.

Billings has been a La Crosse County supervisor for eight years.

Republicans currently hold a 59 to 38 majority in the state Assembly. There is one independent.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.