|Wisconsin State Senate District 32|
| Term in office began|
| Term in office ended|
August 9, 2011
Kapanke's professional experiences include substitute teacher; owner of the La Crosse Loggers Baseball Team; manager; regional sales manager; home builder; United States Marine Corps Reserve; and Wisconsin National Guard.
Kapanke earned a B.S. and MEPD from University of Wisconsion, La Crosse. He and his wife, Ruth, have four children.
In the 2011-2012 legislative session, Kapanke served on these committees:
- Agriculture, Forestry, and Higher Education, Chair
- Energy, Biotechnology, and Consumer Protection, Vice Chair
- Financial Institutions and Rural Issues
- Joint Survey Committee on Retirement Systems, Co-Chair
- Workforce Development, Small Business, and Tourism, Vice Chair
In the 2009-2010 legislative session, Kapanke served on these committees:
- Agriculture and Higher Education Committee, Wisconsin Senate
- Public Health, Senior Issues, Long-Term Care, and Job Creation Committee, Wisconsin Senate
- Rural Issues, Biofuels, and Information Technology Committee, Wisconsin Senate
- Special Committee on Justice Reinvestment Initiative Oversight
Kapanke lost to Jennifer Shilling in a recall election held August 9.
Needing 15,588 to force a recall, petitioners submitted an estimated 30,000 signatures to the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board on April 1, 2011. The signatures submitted to recall Kapanke were the first set of signatures submitted in the overall recall battle. On May 23, the GAB rejected most challenges to the petition, clearing the way for a recall election.
Democratic Assemblywoman Jennifer Shilling ran against Kapanke. Kapanke's attorneys filed papers in Dane County Court on May 31, seeking to stop the recall election. The GAB officially certified the recall election on June 3. This set the stage for a July 12 election, but since multiple candidates filed, a primary was held July 12 with the recall election on August 9.
At a meeting of the La Crosse County Republicans on May 25, a secret recording captured leaders considering running a spoiler candidate against Shilling in order to necessitate a primary and push back the recall election. La Crosse County Republican Party Chair Bill Feehan said he met with an attorney and would file suit against the person who made the recording.
On June 7, James Smith, a recent member of the La Crosse County Republican executive committee, announced he was running as a protest candidate in order to necessitate a Democratic primary between himself and Shilling in the 32nd District. He explained his candidacy - “I want to bring light on the issue that 22,000 signatures can pretty much overturn an election where even the loser got 40,000 votes.”
|July 12 Democratic primary|
Kapanke lost to Shilling in the recall.
|August 9 Recall - District 32|
|Jennifer Shilling (D)||33,193||55.38%|
|Dan Kapanke (R)||26,724||44.58%|
Dan Kapanke raised $278,184 for his campaign, while Tara Johnson raised $265,933.
|Wisconsin State Senate, District 32 (2008)|
|Dan Kapanke (R)||45,454|
|Tara Johnson (D)||42,647|
Senator Kapanke at the Wisconsin GOP Convention
Recent legislation sponsored or co-sponsored by Sen. Kapanke includes:
- A bill creating a tax credit for meat processing modernization and expansion
- A bill eliminating the enrollment limit for charter schools
According to records available as of May 17, 2011, Kapanke raised $5,378 during 2010, a year he was not up for election. Listed below are the top five contributors.
|Tavern League of Wisconsin||$1,000|
|Wisconsin Dental Association||$1,000|
|Northwestern Mutual Life||$1,000|
|Dean Health System||$500|
|Eli Lilly & Co||$500|
Some of the top donors to Sen. Kapanke's 2008 campaign, according to the National Institute on Money in State Politics:
- Goodwin R. Lyons Jr., Ty R. Taylor, Terry A. Cowgill, Friends of Mike Huebsch, Randy and Carol Knox
- Finance, insurance and real estate interests were his largest donor group.
In 2008, Kapanke collected $278,184 in donations.
Listed below are the top four contributors to his campaign.
|Goodwin Lyons, Jr.||$2,000|
|Friends of Mike Huebsch||$1,500|
- Social media:
- Summary, biography, voting record, and interest group ratings at Project Vote Smart
- Profile at Wikipedia
- Campaign contributions at Follow The Money
- Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, "Committee to Recall Kapanke," accessed on June 9, 2011
- Washington Post, "Wisconsin recall drive already making history," April 4, 2011
- Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, "Kapanke recall campaign to deliver signatures Friday," April 1, 2011
- Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, "First recall campaign MAY have enough signatures," March 29, 2011
- FOX 11, "GAB clears way for 3 GOP recall elections," May 23, 2011
- Wisconsin State Journal, "Recall-targeted GOP senators challenge validity of petitions," June 1, 2011
- Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, "Recall of Senator Dan Kapanke Certificate of Sufficiency and Order," June 3, 2011
- La Crosse Tribune, "Secret tape: GOP considered spoiler candidate to challenge Shilling," June 1, 2011
- La Crosse Tribune, "County GOP to sue over secret tape," June 4, 2011
- La Crosse Tribune, “Former GOP officer to challenge Shilling as Democrat,” June 7, 2011
- Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, "July 12 Primary Results District 32," accessed August 11, 2011
- Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, "District 32 Recall Election Results," accessed August 19, 2011
- Wisconsin State Election Results, 2008
- Follow the Money, "2008 campaign contributions," accessed December 29, 2014
- Assembly Bill 12
- Bill 220
- 2010 contributors to Dan Kapanke
- Follow the Money, "2008 campaign contributions," accessed December 19, 2014
- 2008 contributors to Dan Kapanke
|Wisconsin State Senate District 32
2004–August 9, 2011
| Succeeded by|