The 50th is a good example of a rural Assembly seat where the numbers look good for Democrats at the top of the ticket, but where the Republican Assembly member is able to significantly outperform Republican numbers in their own election.
Rep. Ed Brooks (R- Reedsburg) was elected in 2008 in his southwestern Wisconsin district and re-elected three times since. In 2012, Brooks won by nearly 1,000 votes while at the same time Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney only got 44 percent of the vote in the 50th.
Brooks pops up on the radar in both caucuses this year, first because the district is Democratic by the numbers, and second because many feel the candidate challenging Brooks is formidable.
Art Shrader, a longtime district resident out of Reedsburg is running against Brooks as a Democrat. Shrader’s background is in banking and he currently works at a credit union in the district.
Assembly Democrats perceive the current political environment as favorable to them heading into November. If that holds true, the 50th is the type of seat they will need to capture in order to make any significant gains.