Republican U.S. Senate candidates have debate tonight at Waukesha County Expo Center

Published on: 4/11/2012

Eleven days after the Republican presidential candidates were in the spotlight in Waukesha, the GOP U.S. Senate hopefuls now have the stage.

The Republican candidates seeking to represent the GOP Party and replace the retiring Sen. Herb Kohl will debate tonight at the Waukesha County Expo Center, 1000 Northview Road.

Doors open at 5:30 p.m., a general reception with a cash bar is at 6 p.m. and the debate begins at 7 p.m.

The candidates scheduled to be at the debate are Assembly Speaker Jeff Fitzgerald (R-Horicon), Madison businessman Eric Hovde, former congressman Mark Neumann and Rhinelander physical therapist Kip Smith.

Missing from this group is the highest profile candidate, Tommy Thompson. The former Wisconsin governor will be at an out of state fundraiser.

The Wisconsin Reporter, a Madison-based statehouse news organization, and the Republican Party of Waukesha County are hosting the first Wisconsin Republican Primary U.S. Senate debate of the 2012 election.

The debate will feature Wisconsin Reporter’s bureau chief, Matt Kittle, as moderator, and Charlie Sykes, host of Milwaukee's Newsradio 620 WTMJ on the question panel.

Primary elections are Aug. 14 with the general election is Nov. 6.