Ron Johnson, Republican Senator, to Seek Third Term in Wisconsin

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November’s race could help determine control of the Senate, currently split 50-50

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“I believe America is in danger. As much as I want to rest in a quiet retirement, I don’t think I should,” Mr. Johnson said.

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The decision by Mr Johnson, who once promised to retire after two terms as the GOP tries to win control of the Senate, is currently split 50-50. The move means Republicans won’t have to scramble to find another candidate ahead of the party primary this summer.

Since entering the Senate, Mr Johnson has embraced the outsider’s mantra and sought to position himself as a leading voice for fiscal restraint. The former businessman has also questioned the pressure to vaccinate more and more people against Kovid-19.

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Mr Johnson faces an uphill battle with voters, as state polls show his approval ratings underwater. At the same time, the current political climate is dangerous for Democrats. The party that controls the White House traditionally loses seats in midterm elections, voters are feeling squeezed by inflation, and President Biden’s popularity has waned.

Close to a dozen Democrats are jockeying ahead of an August primary to win the right to challenge Mr Johnson in the general election.

Mr Biden won Wisconsin by six-tenths of a percentage point in 2020, the third narrowest result nationwide and the latest example of the state’s long tradition of hard-fought races.

On an initial fundraising basis, Top four Democrats in the race Mandela Barnes and State Treasurer Sarah Godlevsky, as well as Alex Larry, the son of a billionaire hedge-fund manager, who are also Co-Owners of the Milwaukee Bucks Tom Nelson, the basketball team and top elected official in a county southwest of Green Bay.

“Johnson’s continued attacks on working families, health care and the fundamentals of American democracy disqualify him for a third term,” Democratic Party of Wisconsin President Ben Wikler said in a statement late Friday.

non-partisan Cook Political Report Wisconsin rates the competition as one of three tossups currently held by the GOP, along with North Carolina and Pennsylvania. Mr Biden won narrowly in Wisconsin and Pennsylvania, while Mr Trump won in North Carolina.

With a significant number of swing voters, Wisconsin has elected both progressives and conservatives to statewide office. In 2018, it re-elected one of the chamber’s most liberal members, Democratic Sen. Tammy Baldwin, by nearly 11 percentage points, while only ousting conservative Republican Gov. Scott Walker from office.

The state saw some of the first television commercials of the 2022 campaign cycle nearly a year ago, when Wisconsin’s Democratic Party launched more than $100,000 in places criticizing Mr Johnson, who has questioned the existence of climate change. , Mr Biden’s 2020 victory and whether the January 6 riot at the Capitol amounted to an armed rebellion.

a Marquette Law School Poll At the end of October 38% of registered voters said they would vote to re-elect Mr Johnson, while 52% said they would support someone else. Slightly more were unfavourable than favorable attitudes towards them, from 42% to 36%.

Like Mr Trump, Mr Johnson has spread false claims that there was widespread election fraud in 2020. In January 2021, he was among 11 current and incoming GOP senators who said they would vote to reject some states’ Electoral College counts unless Congress is able to conduct an emergency, 10-day audit of election results. appointed a commission for In the wake of the January 6 riots, Mr Johnson declined to challenge the count.

Mr Johnson’s political career began in 2009 around the same time as the rise of the Anti-establishment Tea Party movement, which challenged government spending, regulations, taxes and the Affordable Care Act, which became law in 2010.

Mr Johnson won his seat in 2010 defeating former Democratic Senator Russ Feingold, who was in power three times. Mr Johnson won a rematch between the two men six years later, though his 2016 margin was narrow.

Write John McCormick at [email protected]


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