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Judge orders Scott Walker to hold state special elections

Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker. Photo: Win McNamee / Getty Images

A Wisconsin judge on Thursday ordered Gov. Scott Walker to call special elections to fill two seats in the state legislature vacated by fellow Republicans last year. The ruling delivered a legal victory to Democrats as well as a national group led by former Attorney General Eric Holder who filed the challenge.

The backdrop: Walker had rejected calls to hold elections before this year's midterms saying it would be a waste of money and that he's under no under no legal obligation to hold the elections. But Democrats and Holders' group, the National Redistricting Foundation, argued that residents would be denied representation for more than a year since the Republican-controlled General Assembly won't convene until January 2019.