U.S. Senator Ron Johnson is keeping his future plans to himself for now. The Wisconsin Republican did pledge not to run for a third term during his 2016 campaign.
“That pledge is on my mind, it was my preference then, I would say it’s my preference now,” the Wisconsin Republican said last week. “I’m happy to go home. But, I think that pledge was based on the assumption that we wouldn’t have Democrats once again in total control of government.”
“This Democratic Party isn’t the Democratic Party of your parents and grandparents,” Johnson said Monday on FOX News. “This is a radical group, the most progressive group that we’ve seen.”
This is not your parents’ or grandparents’ Democratic Party.
We’re seeing a flood of progressive and radical legislation. pic.twitter.com/wK8Jaszpv3
— Senator Ron Johnson (@SenRonJohnson) March 9, 2021
Johnson has repeatedly voiced his concerns about the long-term impacts of the $1.9 trillion American Recovery Act, and on Thursday he acted to force Senate clerks to read every word of the 628-page pandemic relief bill out loud.
Johnson said he wanted to create a delay so that proper consideration on the spending package could be given. “We close up shop, and the bill’s passed. I don’t think that’s the proper thing to do with the $1.9 trillion spending blowout that we don’t really need to pass.”
I just objected to skipping past the reading of the Democrats’ 628-page bill that was just introduced minutes ago.
If they’re going to add nearly $2T to the national debt at least we should know what’s in the bill.
— Senator Ron Johnson (@SenRonJohnson) March 4, 2021
Johnson, along with every Republican in the Senate, went on to vote against the relief measure.
Wisconsin Democratic chair Ben Wikler said that “by doing everything in his power to block urgently needed relief for Wisconsin families, Senator Ron Johnson has earned the title of the number one opponent of middle-class and working-class relief.”
Ron Johnson not only delayed the vote on the COVID-19 relief bill but also voted against it altogether.
He continues to show us that he’s incapable of standing up for Wisconsinites, and we will vote him out.
— Wisconsin Democrats (@WisDems) March 8, 2021
Three Democrats, Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson, Milwaukee Bucks executive Alex Lasry and Marshfield radiologist Gillian Battino, have already announced their candidacies to challenge Johnson in 2022.
But Johnson said he doesn’t feel any pressure, to decide whether he’ll run. “I truly have not decided, and I think I have plenty of time to decide.”
He also said the only people who care about his plans for 2022 are political consultants. “This is getting to an absurd level, where you have U.S. Senate races costing a hundred million dollars. The vast majority of that money is completely wasted. So I think I’m doing everybody a favor just kind of holding of on deciding, which means holding off on campaigning.”