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Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) introduced Sunday that he’ll run for reelection, after months of hypothesis round his potential retirement.

“It’s not a call I’ve made flippantly,” Johnson mentioned in his assertion.

“When re-election is just not your major motivation, these are straightforward guarantees to maintain — and I’ve faithfully achieved so. That perspective is comparatively distinctive in Washington, and it could be one cause why many recognize having me concerned within the nationwide debate,” he mentioned.

Johnson, who was an govt at a household plastics firm earlier than moving into politics in 2010, rode into the Senate on the tea social gathering wave and defeated sitting Democrat Russ Feingold. He beat Feingold as soon as once more in 2016, when Donald Trump narrowly gained Wisconsin within the presidential election. He mentioned his 2016 run could be his final.

In an opinion piece within the Wall Street Journal Sunday morning, Johnson mentioned he determined to renege on that assertion as a result of he feels “America is in peril.”

“Numerous folks have inspired me to run, saying they depend on me to be their voice, to talk plain and apparent truths different elected leaders shirk from expressing ― truths the elite in authorities, mainstream media and Huge Tech don’t need you to listen to,” Johnson wrote.

He has lengthy been among the many extra conservative members of the Senate: He has mentioned he doesn’t consider in local weather change or world warming, has strict anti-immigration views and has lengthy fought to dismantle Obamacare.

Over the final 5 years, he has additionally totally adopted Trump’s Republican Social gathering.

When Trump downplayed COVID-19, Johnson questioned the seriousness of the illness as effectively. He unfold conspiracy theories about coronavirus vaccines and refused to get one himself, and in addition referred to as for extra analysis into debunked remedies like hydroxychloroquine.

The senator additionally refused to just accept the 2020 election outcomes, and continues to name on Wisconsin Republicans to take over the elections system. He has defended Trump supporters who stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, saying they had been individuals who “love this nation” and that he would have been way more scared had they been Black Lives Matter protesters. He mentioned he “didn’t really feel threatened” by the lethal riot.

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) questions Secretary of State Antony Blinken during the Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing in September. Johnson has announced that he'll seek reelection next year.
Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) questions Secretary of State Antony Blinken throughout the Senate Overseas Relations Committee listening to in September. Johnson has introduced that he’ll search reelection subsequent yr.

Tom Williams through Getty Pictures

In a single New York Instances article, some Wisconsin Republicans called him a modern-day Joe McCarthy, the late Republican senator from Wisconsin who staged the nationwide witch hunt for communists within the Fifties — dubbed “McCarthyism” — that in the end destroyed the livelihood of many. McCarthy, who had an acrimonious relationship with a lot of his Senate colleagues, was in the end censured. Johnson dismissed the comparisons in an interview with The New York Times.

“Having already skilled a rising stage of vitriol and false assaults, I actually don’t anticipate higher therapy sooner or later,” Johnson mentioned in his assertion asserting his Senate run.

Republicans had been holding out hope that Johnson would search reelection, saving them the difficulty of discovering one other candidate in the beginning of the election yr. Sen. Rick Scott (R-Fla.), chair of the Nationwide Republican Senatorial Committee, said in August that he expected Johnson to run again.

Johnson had additionally hinted that this may be the case, saying his “desire” could be to retire from the Senate however that he was “panicked for the path of this nation.”

Johnson has develop into a simple punching bag for Democrats in Wisconsin, who’re making an attempt not solely to flip his seat but additionally preserve management of the state’s governorship. Democrats have a big discipline of candidates operating to be their nominee, and the pack is presently led by Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes and state Treasurer Sarah Godlewski.

“Whether or not he was manipulating the GOP tax rip-off invoice to complement himself and his greatest political donors, making an attempt to drive up well being care prices and rip away protections for pre-existing situations, or failing to crack down on China’s illicit financial practices and firms that outsource our jobs, Johnson has confirmed over and over he’s solely ever centered on serving himself,” Democratic Social gathering of Wisconsin Chair Ben Wikler mentioned in an announcement.

Democrats throughout the nation face a tricky election yr in 2022. However they hope Johnson has the identical impact on Wisconsin’s extra suburban Republicans as Trump did in 2020, when Joe Biden narrowly gained the state.



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