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Johnson still undecided on seeking third Senate term

Published: Mar. 5, 2021 at 3:31 PM CST|Updated: Mar. 5, 2021 at 6:12 PM CST
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MADISON, Wis. (AP) — U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson says he remains undecided on whether to seek a third term and may not announce his plans for as much as a year, even though keeping his pledge not to run again is “probably my preference now.”

However, Johnson said when he made the pledge in 2016 he didn’t envision that Democrats would have full control of Congress and the White House. Johnson’s seat is up in 2022 and numerous Republicans are considering running should he not seek a third term.

Milwaukee Bucks executive Alex Lasry and Outagamie County Executive Tom Nelson are among the Democrats who have already announced they are running.

During a conference call Friday, Johnson said he felt bad about making “those poor Senate clerks” read the 600+ page stimulus bill. The reading took more than ten hours and ended around 2 p.m. eastern time.

Johnson argued while listening and reading the bill caused him to decide that it contained items that Democrats wanted that he said had nothing to do with COVID-19 relief. He said the hours it took to read the proposal bought his fellow Republicans time to craft amendments to the bill

He defended his decision to call for the entire bill to be read, explaining that the measure had only been introduced a half-hour earlier when Maj. Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer offered it as a substitute amendment.

Johnson also took exception to the price tag, accusing fellow senators of treating the funding as “monopoly money.”

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.