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Tommy Thompson, HHS secretary under Bush, gets Senate nod

Tommy Thompson, a Health and Human Services Secretary under former president George W. Bush, won the Republican nomination for U.S. Senate in Wisconsin on Tuesday.

Thompson wants to repeal the Affordable Care Act, which includes a permanent reauthorization of the Indian Health Care Improvement Act. He's very familiar with the latter -- he promised Congress he would help get it passed back in 2004.

"It is time to pass this legislation," Thompson told the Senate Indian Affairs Committee in July 2004.

The bill, however, never became law amid opposition from Republicans like Thompson. The Department of Justice objected to provisions affecting urban Indians, consultation and the federal trust responsibility while Senate Republicans repeatedly blocked the measure.

Thompson has experience in other Indian issues. As former governor of Wisconsin, he signed the first Class III gaming compacts in 1992.

Thompson will face Tammy Baldwin (D), who currently serves represents Wisconsin's 2nd Congressional district in November.

Get the Story:
Thompson wins Senate primary, advances to face Baldwin in November (The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel 8/15)
Tommy Thompson wins Wisconsin’s Republican Senate primary (The Washington Post 8/15)
Thompson Wins G.O.P. Senate Race in Wisconsin (The New York Times 8/15)