Lame-duck Speaker Paul Ryan endorsed Wisconsin state Sen. Leah Vukmir for the Wisconsin Senate Republican primary on Monday.
On Monday, Ryan and Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI) wrote an op-ed in RightWisconsin to endorse Vukmir for the Wisconsin primary.
Paul Ryan said in a statement on Monday:
I’m proud to endorse Leah Vukmir for the United States Senate. She is a longtime friend, a conservative ally, and the right person to take on Tammy Baldwin this fall. Leah has proven that she’s committed to expanding opportunity and challenging the status quo, and our state deserves that kind of leadership in the Senate. She will be a great partner to Ron Johnson and will fight tirelessly to make Washington work more like Wisconsin.
Vukmir has served as an ally of the Republican establishment for a long time. Breitbart News reported in October that Vukmir refused to answer whether she, if elected to the U.S. Senate, would support Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) for Senate Majority Leader.
The AP wrote after an interview with Vukmir, “Vukmir would not say Tuesday whether she would support ousting McConnell, even though she believes ‘in some regards’ he is blocking President Donald Trump’s agenda.”
Vukmir also supported Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) after her preferred candidate, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, dropped out of the race. Rubio infamously backed the “Gang of Eight” amnesty bill.
In contrast, Marine veteran and businessman Kevin Nicholson continues to support President Donald Trump and his nationalist-populist agenda.
A Nicholson spokesman said in October that Nicholson is “prepared to support new leadership because of the Senate’s failure to pass a conservative agenda.”
Ryan’s endorsement arises as Vukmir’s primary opponent, Kevin Nicholson, leads in multiple polls against Vukmir. One poll commissioned b the Marquette Law School shows Nicholson leading by five points, while another survey organized by the Restoration PAC shows Nicholson leading by 14 points.
Great America PAC, a pro-Trump, super PAC, endorsed Nicholson last October.
In his op-ed Ryan writes that Vukmir “has been a conservative partner among grassroots Republicans for years,” even though FreedomWorks, a prominent conservative activist group, endorsed Nicholson for U.S. Senate.
FreedomWorks President Adam Brandom said of Nicholson, “FreedomWorks for America is pleased to endorse Kevin Nicholson, who has served admirably, for the U.S. Senate seat currently occupied by an opponent of fiscal responsibility and conservative values, Tammy Baldwin.”
Ryan and Sensenbrenner’s op-ed does not mention prominent immigration issues such as building President Donald Trump’s border wall with Mexico, stopping illegal immigration, or transitioning to a merit-based immigration system. In contrast, Nicholson has capitalized on immigration, slamming Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) for pushing “catch and release” policies.
“We must stop illegal immigration by securing our southern border,” the former Marine said last week.
In an interview with Breitbart News Sunday, Nicholson said, “We need an economically sustainable sensible plan that shuts down illegal immigration and has a merit-based sensible immigration policy… and that’s what we should be pushing for.”
Nicholson continued, suggesting that Democrats such as Sen. Baldwin want illegal immigration to depress American wages and increase their voter base.
The Wisconsin conservative explained:
You look at people like Tammy Baldwin, what they’re really looking for to do when they advocate for illegal immigration is, they’re looking to take advantage of people, either economically or politically. They want cheap labor or cheap votes, one of the two. They want to flood the country with people that are dependent on their largess so they can hold them accountable politically.
“[On] the construction of a physical barrier, I’m a former combat engineer in the Marine Corps, and barriers work. They do stop people from crossing them and that is the entire idea behind them,” Nicholson added.