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State Senator accuses GOP of "hating blacks and Latinos"

MADISON, Wis (WSAU-Wheeler News)  Republicans demand an apology from Milwaukee Senate Democrat Tim Carpenter, who accused a G-O-P senator yesterday of quote, "hating blacks and Latinos."

During a floor debate over limits on early voting, Carpenter said Elections Committee chair Mary Lazich must despise minorities, because several bills she sponsored would limit voting in bigger cities where the largest numbers of minority voters live. Lazich vehemently objected. Her fellow Republican Paul Farrow of Pewaukee called Carpenter's remarks "rude and reprehensive." Carpenter accused the G-O-P of what he called "election creep," saying quote -- "Bill by bill, it's making it more difficult for Democrats to take on Republicans, and I think it's by design."

Republicans said rural residents don't get the same voting opportunities as the bigger cities with more resources, and the bills are designed to fix that. Scot Ross said his liberal group One Wisconsin Now might file suit if the new early voting limits become law, on the grounds that it discriminates against minorities. Democrats blocked the early voting bill last night. Final Senate passage is expected this morning.