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The Latest: Republicans divided over Evers’ Cabinet pick

March 13, 2019

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Latest on Dawn Crim nomination hearing (all times local):

2:15 p.m.

Republican senators are divided on whether one of Gov. Tony Evers’ Cabinet secretaries who was charged with felony child abuse in 2005 after jabbing her 5-year-old son’s hand with a pen should be confirmed.

Dawn Crim testified Wednesday in front of a Senate committee. Evers nominated her to lead the state Department of Safety and Professional Services with regulates and issues licenses to a wide array of professionals and businesses.

There are three Republicans on the panel. Sen. Devin LeMahieu says he supports Crim. Sen. Dave Craig says he needs to review information provided by Evers about Crim before coming to a decision.

Committee chairman Sen. Chris Kapenga says he won’t immediately schedule a vote and needs to review the Evers information and discuss concerns about Crim before moving forward.

The Senate is controlled 19-14 by Republicans.

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1:25 p.m.

One of Gov. Tony Evers’ Cabinet secretaries who was charged with felony child abuse in 2005 after jabbing her 5-year-old son’s hand with a pen told lawmakers on Wednesday it was a “horrendous mistake.”

Dawn Crim is Evers pick to lead the Department of Safety and Professional Services. She told the Senate committee considering her confirmation Wednesday that the incident involving her son was “the worst experience of my life.”

Crim tells lawmakers that she has taken responsibility for her actions and vowed that it would never happen again.

Evers has stood by Crim, who previously worked under Evers as assistant state superintendent for the Division of Student and School Success. She is also a former assistant women’s basketball coach at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

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9:24 a.m.

Lawmakers get a chance to question one of Gov. Tony Evers’ Cabinet secretaries who was charged with felony child abuse in 2005 after jabbing her 5-year-old son’s hand with a pen.

Dawn Crim was scheduled to appear before a Senate committee on Wednesday.

Evers has stood by Crim, who previously worked for him at the state education department.

But Republican Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald has said Crim’s appointment may “languish” without enough votes to support confirmation.

Crim is Evers’ pick to lead the Department of Safety and Professional Services. That agency enforces building safety laws, regulates and issues licenses to a wide variety of professionals and businesses.

The case against Crim was dismissed, and the charges were never proven in court, under a deferred prosecution agreement after Crim successfully completed the terms of the arrangement.