Republican Kevin Nicholson suspends campaign for Wisconsin governor

Published: Jul. 5, 2022 at 4:16 PM CDT|Updated: Jul. 5, 2022 at 4:40 PM CDT
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DELAFIELD, Wis. (WBAY) - Republican Kevin Nicholson has suspended his campaign for Wisconsin governor.

Nicholson, who ran as an outsider, said he believed the only way forward for his campaign was to attack other candidates and run a negative campaign.

“While our team has the capability to do that, that is not something I want to do – nor do I believe that it would be good for the party to do so. This election is too important for our state and our movement,” Nicholson said.

Nicholson released the following statement Tuesday evening with the announcement:

“When my family and I started this campaign, we knew it would be an uphill battle. I am not part of the insider political class and am a threat to all they hold dear.

We have had many highs over the last six months, and I am proud of what we have built. I’ve traveled our state and heard from thousands of Wisconsinites who believe our society is off track, who want an outsider as their governor, and not someone from the Madison Machine.

I have been encouraged by our supporters, and the old and new friends that my family and I have met on the trail. I love this state and the people in it and truly believe that – though we face great challenges – our best days lay ahead.

Over the past week, I have assessed the state of the primary race and it has become clear to me and my team the only path forward for our campaign is attacking the other candidates in the race on the airwaves and running a very negative campaign. While our team has the capability to do that, that is not something I want to do – nor do I believe that it would be good for the party to do so. This election is too important for our state and our movement.

So today, I am suspending my campaign for Governor. I want to thank all the thousands of people who have donated, volunteered, and supported my campaign. It has been an honor.

I do not plan to make any endorsements in the race before the primary. I will whole heartily support the nominee on August 10th and will work to get Republicans up and down the ballot elected. Our fight is not over, and I will continue to be engaged on the battlefield to elect conservative outsiders in the state of Wisconsin.”

Kevin Nicholson

Nicholson was campaigning in Watertown on July 4, one day before the announcement.

He campaigned in Neenah on July 3.

Wisconsin’s Primary Election is Aug. 9. At least four Republicans remain in the running to challenge incumbent Democratic Gov. Tony Evers in November.

The remaining Republican candidates are Adam Fischer, Rebecca Kleefisch, Tim Michels, and Timothy Ramthun.

Michels released a statement saying he respected Nicholson for his service and “outsider message.”

Kleefisch asked Nicholson’s supporters to join her team.

In the latest Marquette University Law School Poll, Michels was leading the pack with 27 percent support, followed by Kleefisch with 26 percent. Nicholson was third with 10 percent. Ramthun has 3 percent support and Fischer has less than 0.5 percent support. The poll showed Kleefisch had the highest favorability ratings with 44 percent. Michels was next with 42 percent. Nicholson had 27 percent. Ramthun had 7 percent.

In a head-to-head match up, Gov. Tony Evers was favored 48 percent to Nicholson’s 40 percent

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