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Milwaukee elects state’s first woman Asian-American judge

mugs-031617Voters in Milwaukee made history Tuesday, electing the state’s first woman Asian-American judge and the nation’s second Hmong-American judge.

Kashoua Yang, a Milwaukee attorney, defeated challenger Scott Wales, a Fox Point municipal judge and Milwaukee attorney, in Tuesday’s race for Milwaukee County Circuit Court’s Branch 47. Yang took 57.2 percent of the vote, or 49,394 votes, according to unofficial election results. Wales took 42.5 percent of the vote, or 36,732 votes.

In the contested race for Branch 1 of Milwaukee’s municipal court, incumbent Judge Valarie Hill held onto her spot, taking 60.5 percent of her vote, or 23,918 votes. William Crowley, an attorney at Disability Rights Wisconsin, trailed with 39 percent of the vote, or 15,407 votes.

Voter turnout in Tuesday’s spring election was at about 17 percent. A little more than 100,000 ballots were cast in Milwaukee County. Throughout the state, about 16 percent of Wisconsin’s eligible voters cast ballots in Tuesday’s election.

About Erika Strebel, erika.strebel@wislawjournal.com

Erika Strebel is the law beat reporter for the Wisconsin Law Journal and a law school student at UW-Madison. She can be reached at 414-225-1825.

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