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Former Wis. lawmaker, railroad commissioner dies

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Former state Sen. Roger Breske has died.

Breske’s former Senate chief-of-staff, Sue Meinholz, said Breske’s daughter told her Breske died Monday evening of a heart attack. He was 73.

Breske, a Democrat from Eland, was a former bar owner and a Wisconsin Tavern League president. He served in the state Senate from 1990 until 2008, when then-Gov. Jim Doyle appointed him as state railroad commissoner after he opposed a statewide smoking ban, one of Doyle’s centerpiece initiatives.

Breske resigned from the post in 2011. Republican Gov. Scott Walker replaced him with former Democratic state Sen. Jeff Plale.

State Democratic Party Chairman Mike Tate issued a statement Tuesday morning saying Breske listened to working people and every public servant could learn from his example.

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