Kooyenga Foregoes U.S. Senate Run

Rep. Dale Kooyenga, Credit: MacIver News Service

Another piece in Wisconsin’s next U.S. Senate race fell into place on Wednesday morning. In comments first reported to WisPolitics.com, state Rep. Dale Kooyenga (R-Brookfield) announced he would not be running against Democratic incumbent Tammy Baldwin.

The announcement ends months of quiet speculation on Kooyenga, who is seen as a rising star with a solid track record as a fiscal conservative.

“After considerable thought and prayer it is clear I can best serve our Country and principles by fighting for our Republic at the state level, continuing to serve in the US Army Reserves, working in the private sector and most importantly spending time with my wife and four children,” the Brookfield Republican said.

So far only Delafield businessman Kevin Nicholson has officially announced his candidacy for the Republican nomination; but he’s expected to have company shortly. State Senator Leah Vukmir (R-Brookfield) is expected to enter the race any week now and former U.S. Senate candidate Eric Hovde has said he too will make a decision on his potential candidacy sometime in September.

Today’s news; however, will not likely end all speculation on Kooyenga’s future. If Vukmir enters the U.S. Senate race, it would open up her state senate seat, and with Kooyenga already representing a third of her district, it could give him an opening to move from the state Assembly to the state Senate next fall.

*In light of Dick Uihlein’s contributions to a Super Pac supporting Kevin Nicholson’s Senate run, we feel it necessary when covering the Senate race to disclose that we receive $100 thousand a year from the Ed Uihlein Foundation for the Media Trackers project.*