Wisconsin Public Radio

Tiffany Far Behind Baldwin In Fundraising

U.S. Senator Tammy Baldwin raised $3 million in 2nd quarter of 2023, vs $114,000 for possible challenger, U.S. Rep. Tom Tiffany.

By , Wisconsin Public Radio - Jul 18th, 2023 11:10 am
Rep. Tom Tiffany, R-Hazelhurst, at Gov. Tony Evers' first State of the State address in Madison, Wisconsin, at the State Capitol building on Jan. 22, 2019. Emily Hamer/Wisconsin Watch

Rep. Tom Tiffany, R-Hazelhurst, at Gov. Tony Evers’ first State of the State address in Madison, Wisconsin, at the State Capitol building on Jan. 22, 2019. Emily Hamer/Wisconsin Watch
Governor Tony Evers gives his first State of the State address in Madison, Wisconsin, at the State Capitol building on Jan. 22, 2019. He addressed a joint meeting of the Assembly and the Senate.

A potential 2024 challenger to U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin is picking up some fundraising steam, though his campaign war chest is still far smaller than the Democratic incumbent’s.

U.S. Rep. Tom Tiffany, R-Minocqua, took in nearly $114,000 in the second quarter of 2023, according to a report filed by his campaign with the Federal Elections Commission. That’s more than three times what the campaign raised in the first quarter of this year.

Anthony Chergosky, an assistant political science professor at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse, says the uptick signals Tiffany’s ambitions for higher office — though Chergosky notes Tiffany would eventually need to raise much more to be competitive against Baldwin.

“As the (Republican) party unifies behind a candidate, it’s likely that the candidate will be able to attract significant resources,” Chergosky said. “But currently, Rep. Tiffany … does not have the kind of funding needed to run a statewide campaign.”

Although Tiffany has said he’s considering a run for Wisconsin’s U.S. Senate seat, thus far, no Republican contenders have formally declared their candidacies.

Tiffany expects to make an announcement on the race in the next few weeks, a spokesperson said.

Baldwin’s campaign took in more than $3 million last quarter — more than 26 times the size of Tiffany’s haul during the same reporting period, which extended from April through June.

During a 2020 special election, Tiffany won Wisconsin’s 7th Congressional district in a landslide with nearly 62 percent of the vote. He won by similar margins in the 2020 and 2022 general elections.

But, as Chergosky observed, the competition for Tiffany’s largely rural, solidly red district in northwestern and central Wisconsin will be far a far cry from a U.S. Senate race in a swing state.

“I think the big questions surrounding Rep. Tiffany is if he can shift from a safe House district to a highly competitive Senate election, and if he can attract the kind of resources that would be necessary to run that competitive campaign,” Chergosky said “Strategically, it might take a pivot on the part of Rep. Tiffany.”

Republican Ron Johnson holds Wisconsin’s other Senate seat. Last fall, Johnson won reflection to another six-year term when he edged out former Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes by a single percentage point.

Baldwin has served in the U.S. Senate since 2013. She won her most recent election in 2018 after beating Republican state Sen. Leah Vukmir by nearly 11 percentage points.

Heading into July, Baldwin’s committee reported more than $5.5 million in cash on hand, while Tiffany’s campaign had less than $365,000 in its coffers.

Franklin businessman Scott Mayer has also indicated he might challenge Baldwin. But with more than a year until November’s general election, Wisconsin’s GOP field is still wide open.

Listen to the WPR report here.

Tiffany picks up fundraising as he considers US Senate run, but lags far behind Baldwin was originally published by Wisconsin Public Radio.

2 thoughts on “Tiffany Far Behind Baldwin In Fundraising”

  1. bigb_andb says:

    Shocking the Gerrymandered House Rep can’t gain any traction state wide?

  2. Mingus says:

    This is the guy who worked in the tourist industry who voted against the bill that supported out national our National Parks. It is hard to understand why voters in is district keep him in office when he does nothing to support economic development in the area. I guess they would rather live marginally economically but be right on the loony toon politics that he supports.

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