Republican Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin announced Sunday that he will be running for re-election, in a Sunday op-ed in the Wall Street Journal. He will be pursuing a third term, after first being elected in 2010.
As part of the GOP Tea Party wave when seeking his first victory in 2010, Wisconsin Republicans dominated during former President Barack Obama’s first midterm election and put Johnson in office.
He previously pledged that he would only run for two terms during the 2106 campaign, but explained on Sunday, why he chose to run again in a Sunday opinion piece in the Wall Street Journal.
“During the 2016 campaign, I said it would be my last campaign and final term. That was my strong preference, and my wife’s, as we both looked forward to a normal private life. Neither of us anticipated the Democrats’ complete takeover of government and the disastrous policies they have already inflicted on America and the world, to say nothing of those they threaten to enact in the future,” he wrote.
Continuing, he said, “Nor did we anticipate the pandemic, government’s failed response to it, the loss of freedom that has resulted, and the tyrannical approach taken by the elites who have created and maintained a state of fear that allows them to exercise control over Americans’ lives. I believe America is in peril. Much as I’d like to ease into a quiet retirement, I don’t feel I should. Countless people have encouraged me to run, saying they rely on me to be their voice.”
Many Republicans felt that Johnson would seek a third term in office, according to party sources and reported by CNN.GOP leaders like Senate Minority Leader McConnell (KY) had been pushing Johnson for months to run for reelection.
As an accountant and businessman, Johnson is a staunch ally of former Donald Trump and has a strong relationship with grassroots Republicans in the Badger State, which Biden narrowly won over the former president in the 2020 election.
Johnson has faced controversies in recent years, defending pro-Trump protestors at the Capitol, versus his concerns against Black Lives Matter rioters across the country in 2020. Also, his aggressive probe regarding Hunter Biden’s business dealings in Ukraine. And, like many good conservatives, his temporary suspension from YouTube last year, for spreading alleged misinformation about COVID-19 vaccines.
Of course, Democrats are still smarting from the Senator defeating former Senator Russ Feingold in 2010 and in 2016. Democrats have been trying to beat him for years and have a full slate of party members who have launched campaigns in recent months to run against him.
Those running include frontrunner in the race, Lt. Governor Mandela Barnes, along with state Treasurer Sarah Godlewski, Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson, and businessman Alex Lasry.
An internal poll released by the Barnes campaign on Friday showed him dominating the Democratic primary with 40% of the vote, followed by Lasry at 11%, Godlewski with 10% and Nelson earning 8%, respectively.
The same poll also had Barnes and Johnson tied 43%-43% in a potential general election matchup. Of course, it is Barnes poll, so wouldn’t you want to win your own poll?