State Rep. André Jacque (R-De Pere) announced his candidacy Tuesday in the 1st state Senate district. The seat recently became open when the incumbent, Senator Frank Lasee, accepted a position with the Walker Administration in the Department of Workforce Development.

“I am proud to have led and gotten results on a wide array of issues of importance to my constituents in the 2nd Assembly District, from defending the right to life and human dignity to regulatory reform and eliminating barriers to economic development, cutting costs for taxpayers and local government, attacking government waste and public benefit fraud, honoring our veterans, and cracking down on domestic violence, human trafficking and drunk driving,” said Jacque in his press release Tuesday.  “Running for the 1st Senate District offers the possibility to serve a greater number of my neighbors, to be a more effective voice for them – there is a lot more work to be done.”

Lasee accepted the appointment to the Walker Administration on December 29. One year ago, Lasee denied seeking a position with the Walker Administration when talk show host Jerry Bader reported hearing that Lasee was leaving the legislature after a failed run for Congress ended badly.

“Two sources told me this week that Lasee is pushing hard, very hard, for a job in the Walker administration and will resign from the state senate if or when he secures one,” Bader wrote in an article for RightWisconsin. “I asked Lasee, in a brief text message exchange about the rumors. I first asked him to confirm or deny that he’ll be resigning his senate seat soon. He accused someone by name of spreading the rumor and said it wasn’t true.”

Lasee’s position in the district became more difficult after a tough Republican primary loss in Wisconsin’s 8th Congressional District. Lasee finished a very distant second, and questions were raised about whether Lasee resided in his Senate district.

Bader reported at the time that Jacque was best positioned of the possible candidates to replace Lasee.

Governor Scott Walker also appointed Rep. Keith Ripp (R-Lodi) of the 42nd Assembly district to a position in the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection. Both the Assembly and Senate seats will be filled in the November election this fall.

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