Rep. Sean Duffy decides not to run for U.S. Senate

Duffy cites family reasons for decision

It's not even 2018, but the political deck has already been shuffled in the U.S. Senate race against Democrat Tammy Baldwin.
 
TODAY'S TMJ4 first reported Thursday morning that Republican Sean Duffy won't be running.
 
"I've made a decision I'm not going to jump into this U.S. Senate race."

Congressman Duffy surprised many by saying no to a Senate run in 2018. He listed eight reasons why.
 
"It takes seven days a week, 16 hours of day and I have eight kids - my youngest is 8 months, my oldest is 17," said Duffy. "I just don't want to take the time away from them."

Duffy was considered a front runner to take on Senator Baldwin and said she, "will be beat because her radically liberal Madison record and ideas are out of sync with Wisconsin."
 
The four-term Republican from northwest Wisconsin did a lot of heavy lifting for Donald Trump in the presidential race - raising speculation he was going to jump into the senate race.

"I was on track to raise a lot of money in the first quarter. Money and support was no issue for me," said Duffy.
 
What now? Other republicans being mentioned include Senators Scott Fitzgerald and Leah Vukmir, Representative Dale Kooyenga, former senate candidate Eric Hovde, Milwaukee area businessman Kevin Nicholson, and there's an effort to draft Sheriff David Clarke.
 
"It really blows the race wide open on the Republican side," said Marquette University Professor Paul Nolette.

He says its too early to predict the 2018 political landscape, but like any mid-term election, it can depend on the popularity of the president - especially for Democrat Tammy Baldwin.
 
"I thinks she's going to be in a more comfortable position if Trump has a pretty unpopular presidency as he has already in the first few weeks," said Nolette.
 
Wisconsin Democrats suggest Duffy's decision not to run will have Republicans scrambling to avoid a divisive and messy GOP primary.

"No matter what circus emerges, Tammy Baldwin will continue to stand up to the powerful interests in Washington," said Gillian Drummond with the Democratic Party of Wisconsin.

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