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Nicholson Drops Out of Governor’s Race

By Dee Pettack | July 6, 2022

From WisPolitics.com …Republican Kevin Nicholson isn’t closing the door on another bid for public office after dropping out of the guv’s race.Nicholson, a business consultant and former Marine, didn’t respond to a request for an interview with WisPolitics.com after announcing his decision yesterday. But he told conservative radio host Mark Belling he planned to take time to reflect and was looking forward to spending time with his wife and kids.Nicholson said he will also never stop caring about the state and nation.“You’ve got to stand up and try and do the right thing. How does that manifest in the future? I don’t know exactly,” Nicholson said.Nicholson dropped out of the GOP primary as former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch and construction exec Tim Michels emerged as the two top candidates in the five-person field. They were neck-and-neck in the most recent Marquette University Law School Poll. Meanwhile, Nicholson was at 10 percent in that poll and hasn’t put up a meaningful paid media campaign in recent weeks, though the PAC Fighting for Wisconsin supporting him last month reported spending $950,000 on a media buy.Nicholson’s decision to drop out comes a day after the close of the most recent campaign finance reporting period. Those reports are due July 15 and will give the first look at Nicholson’s fundraising operation since he got into the race in January.Nicholson told Belling that Michels’ major personal resources put him in the position that the only option going forward was to go negative, and he didn’t want to do that.Still, Nicholson has taken shots at both Kleefisch and Michels. After reports that Kleefisch planned to use strategies such as ballot harvesting in the election, Nicholson said anyone who supports the idea is “as dumb as a bag of hammers.”Both Kleefisch and Michels praised Nicholson after he dropped out of the race and vowed to contend for his supporters.State Dem Party spokeswoman Hannah Menchhoff said Nicholson’s departure “only means that there is one less radical Republican in the gubernatorial primary.”

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