Wisconsin Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes Joins Senate Race

Wisconsin Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes is jumping into a crowded Senate primary to be the Democratic nominee in 2022. His entrance heightens what is expected to be one of the marquee primaries during the midterm elections.

Barnes joins seven other Democrats who have already launched their Senate bids. They’re lining up to potentially face incumbent Republican Senator Ron Johnson, who has not yet announced if he will seek a third term.

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“The U.S. Senate is broken,” Barnes said Tuesday at a rally in Milwaukee. “Senator Ron Johnosn is not delivering for the people of Wisconsin. He’s doing like so many other cynical politicians who use false choices to divide us for their own political gain.”

“Hard-working families deserve every opportunity, but politicians like Senator Ron Johnson aren’t delivering,” Barnes tweeted on Tuesday.

Barnes is the first Black lieutenant governor elected in Wisconsin and only the second Black statewide elected official. Barnes easily won his 2018 primary for lieutenant governor before he and Governor Tony Evers narrowly defeated former Republican Governor Scott Walker in the general election. Barnes also served two terms in the State Assembly from 2013 to 2017.

His announcement video focused on his family’s working-class roots and said Wisconsin families need more opportunities. Barnes has been endorsed by the liberal Progressive Change Campaign Committee.

At his campaign kickoff rally, Barnes said America can’t go back to the same policies of the pre-pandemic days. He said leaders need to tackle the climate crisis, end gun violence and create more equal economic opportunities.

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SOURCE: CBS News, Adam Brewster

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