Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson endorses Romney
April 1st, 2012
02:24 PM ET
11 years ago

Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson endorses Romney

(CNN) - Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney locked up the support of Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin on Sunday.

“He’s dedicated toward solving those problems. He is ready, willing and able to lead this nation, unlike President Obama. So today I’m happy to announce my full support and my endorsement of Gov. Romney to be the next president of the United States,” Johnson said on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

- Follow the Ticker on Twitter: @PoliticalTicker

The endorsement came two days before voters head to the polls in the Badger State, which has 42 delegates at stake.

Johnson, a first-term senator who won his seat in a big 2010 upset against Sen. Russ Feingold, said he had not expected to officially support any of the Republican candidates, but changed his mind after getting to know Romney in recent weeks.

“I’ve come away from those conversations fully convinced that Gov. Romney is the person to lead our party, to lead our nation. He fully understands the gravity of our financial situation,” Johnson said.

As a former businessman in manufacturing, Johnson also pointed to Romney’s experience in the private sector as a major reason for his backing of the candidate.

The former Massachusetts governor holds a strong advantage over his GOP rivals in Wisconsin, according to an NBC/Marist Poll released Friday. The survey indicates Romney has the support of 40% of primary voters, compared to Rick Santorum’s 33%, Ron Paul’s 11% and Newt Gingrich’s 8%.

In a statement, Romney touted Johnson’s endorsement and said he looked forward to working with the senator on the campaign trail.

“His understanding and focus on our debt and deficits, and pointed questioning of administration officials, has quickly gained Ron the respect of colleagues and the appreciation of hard working Americans,” Romney said.

Meanwhile, Santorum criticized Johnson's endorsement as another nod for Romney from the GOP "establishment."

"Look, you know I get it, the establishment folks in Washington, D.C., they're in the bubble and they see the world very, very differently than we do and I think most Americans do," Santorum said, campaigning in Milwaukee. "And we're going to continue to go out and try to elect conservatives to the presidency and that's what we're focused on."

- CNN Political Producer Shawna Shepherd contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • Ron Johnson • Senate • Wisconsin
soundoff (10 Responses)
  1. Mike in Texas

    Ask the hard working Americans in Michigan and Ohio how they feel about him.

    Understanding business does not equate to creating jobs. A business person's main function is to maximize profits. Being the President isn't about maximizing profits.

    You want to know to know how Romney dealt with deficits in Massachusetts? He raised taxes and cut spending. This was the correct path. No he wants to cut taxes and cut spending but not military spending. He still has not said what he would cut and by how much.

    April 1, 2012 02:32 pm at 2:32 pm |
  2. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Johnson stood on the supreme court steps and said ACA was taking away our freedom. 100 miles south, the VA state republicans voted on a law to force women to undergo invasive procedures, and make the women pay for the government intrusion. Johnson may just be more dense that Rubio.

    April 1, 2012 02:36 pm at 2:36 pm |
  3. Mike in Texas

    Romney's tax plan calls for huge tax cuts to the wealthiest and increased taxes on lower income people. They keep proposing balancing the budget but insist on lowering taxes. They claim by lowering taxes, economic growth will grow at a very "generous" rate and thus more people would be hired, more money would be made so revenues would increased based on the increase in monies being taxed. The whole notion is based on questionable growth numbers that would very hard to obtain.

    The Republicans want to fill the hole that is the big deficit; however they keep digging the hole bigger with tax cuts.

    April 1, 2012 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  4. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Johnson is unable to do anything without direction from the dark side of the republican party. The Kochs and Rove must have sent him a wake up call.

    April 1, 2012 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  5. Just Say No to Flipper

    Neither of you GOBP cult-members "fully understands the gravity of our financial situation" or you would be endorsing the millionaire tax supported by three quarters of American voters. You are merely toadies for the parasites and neocons lurking among the 1%. Rmoney is great for them; and poison for the rest of America.

    April 1, 2012 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  6. CBR

    How did he become so educated about Romney? How did they get to talk so much? Oh, Congress is on vacation again and Mr. Johnson has time to meet with Mr. Romney. His endorsement is not what one expects of Senator Johnson.

    April 1, 2012 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  7. Ken

    Johnson who? And who cares?

    April 1, 2012 03:24 pm at 3:24 pm |
  8. GI Joe

    Wonder how much "cash" Rmoney is giving each of these less-than-enthusiastic liars?

    April 1, 2012 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  9. Bootstomper

    I love how these guys always say unlike president Obama. They have absolutely no plans no ideas and are really out of touch with the 21st century.In the Republican party's perfect world minorities can't vote there would be no child labor laws and gay Americans would be put in concentration camps.

    April 1, 2012 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  10. Dvet

    Romney is going to be the nominee and then i am going to vote for President Obama. Thats it thats all.

    April 1, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |