Wisconsin Senate candidate Tom Nelson (D) announced on Monday that he was dropping out of the state Senate race just two weeks before the primary election.
“Friends, good news, bad news. The bad news is that I’m suspending the campaign today,” Nelson said in a video posted to Twitter on Monday. “And I want to thank everyone for all the great work you’ve done for us, it means so much that we’ve come to this. So that’s the bad news.”
Nelson, who is the Outagamie County executive, is backing another progressive candidate, Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes (D), to win the Democratic primary and face Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.). He called Barnes a “good man” and a “strong candidate” for the Senate race.
Nelson had been endorsed by the progressive climate group Sunrise Wisconsin and former presidential candidate Marianne Williamson.
But Nelson was probing behind Mandela, Milwaukee Bucks executive Alex Lasry (D) and state treasurer Sarah Godlewski (D) in the race, according to a Marquette University Law School poll.
In his own statement, Barnes thanked Nelson for his endorsement.
“I deeply respect Tom Nelson’s commitment to the workers of this state and am grateful for his support,” Barnes said in his statement. “It’s going to take all of us coming together in every corner of this state to beat Ron Johnson.”
Democrats are hoping to unseat Johnson as they seek to retain their majority in the Senate.