Jeramey Jannene

Godlewski Drops Out, Endorses Barnes

Field clearing for general election showdown between Mandela Barnes and Ron Johnson.

By - Jul 29th, 2022 11:14 am
Sarah Godlewski.

Sarah Godlewski.

Democrats in unity or Democrats facing reality? Either way, the senate Democratic primary field is clearing for Lieutenant Governor Mandela Barnes.

Barnes’ three leading challengers all dropped out this week, essentially assuring him a primary victory on Aug. 9 and a showdown with incumbent U.S. Senator Ron Johnson.

State Treasurer Sarah Godlewski was the latest to pull the plug on her campaign, joining Tom Nelson and Alex Lasry. All three have endorsed Barnes.

“Over a year ago, we launched this campaign to defeat Ron Johnson and return this Senate seat to the people of Wisconsin. I stepped up because, too often, Washington overlooks so many of the challenges working families face–from affordable childcare and senior care to paid family leave to prescription drug costs to reproductive freedom. I believed we needed more working moms at the U.S. Senate table who would fight like hell to make these issues a priority–I still do. But it’s clear that if we want to finally send Ron Johnson packing, we must all get behind Mandela Barnes and fight together,” said Godlewski in a statement.

In late June, the race looked competitive. Barnes was still in the lead with 25% of likely voters, according to a Marquette Law School poll, but a large advertising push by Lasry had closed the gap giving him 21%. Godlewski (9%) and Nelson (7%) were polling in third and fourth place respectively.

But Godlewski, according to those familiar with internal polls, saw her support dwindle after a televised debate. Her support went almost entirely to Barnes, complicating Lasry and Nelson’s pathways to victory. Nelson dropped out Monday and endorsed Barnes, Lasry bailed on Wednesday in a joint event with Barnes.

Godlewski, like Barnes, is not running for re-election to her current statewide seat. Both Barnes and Godlewski were elected to statewide office for the first time in 2018.

“I’m proud of what our 72-county campaign has accomplished, and while I may not be on the ballot this November, every issue we fought to bring front and center will be,” Godlewski said.

No, she won’t be on the ballot in November. But she will still be on primary ballot in August. Those that voted absentee for either Godlewski, Nelson or Lasry can “spoil” their ballots and vote again.

A handful of other challengers remain in the race, some running active campaigns. But none polled above 1% in any of the recent public polls. Steven OlikaraKou LeePeter Peckarsky and Darrell Williams all qualified for the ballot. Olikara participated in a recent televised debate with the other four leading candidates. Shortly after Godlewski announced she was ending her campaign, he retweeted someone asking him not to drop out of the race.

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Categories: Politics

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