The Wisconsin gubernatorial race already has a high-profile Republican candidate, former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch, who served in former Gov. Scott Walker's administration. Last month, shortly after she announced, Madeline did an interview with Kleefisch. Former President Donald Trump, however, has another suggestion about who should run.
"They are both doing very well, so this would be a big sacrifice, but hopefully it will be a sacrifice that will be made for the Great State of Wisconsin and its wonderful, hardworking people. Run Sean, Run! (A little spin-off on the great Herschel Walker.) " - President Trump— Liz Harrington (@realLizUSA) October 16, 2021
That suggestion is former Rep. Sean Duffy, a Republican congressman who served the 7th district of Wisconsin in Congress from 2011 to 2019. In all but his first race, in 2010, he beat his Democratic opponent by double digits.
Rep. Duffy resigned from office in September 2019, around the time their youngest of nine children was born. Their daughter, Valentina, was born early with Down syndrome and had holes in her heart.
The congressman's wife, Rachel Campos-Duffy appears on Fox News Channel and has been active with the LIBRE initative.
Trump's statement did not make mention of Kleefisch or other candidates.
After Trump's statement came out, WisPolitics.com reported that a source told them Duffy is now considering it:
Following the statement, a source familiar with Duffy’s thinking told WisPolitics.com the former congressman was considering it. Duffy resigned his House seat in 2019 to spend more time with his family after receiving the diagnosis that his ninth child would be born with Down syndrome.
Trump’s statement scrambled the GOP field for guv with former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch the only prominent Republican in the race so far. Lobbyist Bill McCoshen passed on a bid earlier this fall, while state Rep. John Macco, of Ledgeview, and former U.S. Senate candidate Kevin Nicholson have been considering runs. Still, Trump’s support has carried significant weight in GOP primaries across the country.
Kleefisch’s campaign didn’t immediately return a call seeking comment this afternoon.
The outlet posted a "Draft Duffy" page on June 20, 2021, with a petition to encourage the former congressman to run for governor.
The Republican nominee will be running against Gov. Tony Evers, a Democrat who defeated Walker in 2018.