PEWAUKEE — Republican candidate for governor Kevin Nicholson said he believes President Joe Biden won Wisconsin, after earlier dodging the question.
Nicholson told WDJT-TV in Milwaukee in a story broadcast Wednesday that he thought Biden had won without naming him directly.
“He’s declared the winner,” Nicholson said. “I believe he won a messy, sloppy, messed-up election.”
Last week, when asked during another interview whether Biden had won, Nicholson did not directly answer the question.
“I think the 2020 election was a mess,” Nicholson said then. “It was a stinky, smelly mess. ... So out of this heaping mess, ballot harvesting and all this other stuff that happened, Joe Biden was declared the winner. And that’s the way it is.”
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His campaign spokeswoman Courtney Mullen said Nicholson’s position on the election has been clear and his comments in the interview were being twisted.
“Kevin has made it clear, Joe Biden has been declared the winner of a messy election that was improperly conducted in 2020,” Mullen said.
Biden won Wisconsin by just under 21,000 votes, an outcome that’s been confirmed following recounts, lawsuits and reviews.
Other Republican candidates for governor, former Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch and state Rep. Timothy Ramthun, are questioning whether Biden won.
Kleefisch said five months ago that Biden won the state, but backed off that in recent interviews, saying she is withholding judgement until after an ongoing Republican investigation into the election has concluded. Ramthun has gone the farthest, trying unsuccessfully to rescind Wisconsin’s 10 electoral votes that were awarded to Biden after he won the state.
Also on Thursday, Nicholson told Wisconsin Republican Party leaders that he would not participate in its endorsement process. The state party votes on who to endorse at its annual state convention in May, a designation that provides the winner with funding and other backing from the state party.
Nicholson is running as an outsider candidate and branding Kleefisch, who served eight years as lieutenant governor under Gov. Scott Walker, as an insider.
Nicholson said in a letter to the party’s endorsement committee that he does not believe in the practice, which he said favors GOP insiders and fractures the party rather than unifying it. He encouraged them not to endorse anyone.
Mark Jefferson, executive director of the Wisconsin Republican Party, declined to comment.
Nicholson, a businessman and former U.S. Marine, ran for U.S. Senate in 2018 and lost the party endorsement. Leah Vukmir, who won the endorsement, lost the election to U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin, D-Madison.
As he did in 2018, Nicholson said he would support whoever wins the Republican primary in the race for governor.
The 2020 election is over. Here’s what happened (and what didn’t)
The 2020 election was “the most secure in American history,” according to the Department of Homeland Security’s Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, which coordinates the nation’s election infrastructure.
While a handful of voters risked going to prison by attempting to vote twice or in the name of a dead relative, as happens in any election, no evidence of widespread fraud has ever been produced in Wisconsin or elsewhere.
Yet, many continue to question some of the practices clerks relied on to encourage eligible voters to cast ballots and make sure their votes were counted amid the first election in more than 100 years held during a pandemic.
The Wisconsin State Journal has covered every twist and turn of this debate in scores of stories. But here are a few that offered some broader context about what happened, and didn't happen, in the election of 2020.
The state has multiple, overlapping safeguards aimed at preventing ineligible voters from casting ballots, tampering with the ballots or altering vote totals.
Nothing in the emails suggests there were problems with the election that contributed in any meaningful way to Trump's 20,682-vote loss to Joe Biden.
No findings of fraud, but Wisconsin election audit questions some of the guidance clerks relied on in 2020
"Despite concerns with statewide elections procedures, this audit showed us that the election was largely safe and secure," Sen. Rob Cowles said Friday.
Tech-backed group spread money around Wisconsin in 2020 election, but Democratic areas benefited most
The grants were provided to every Wisconsin municipality that asked for them, and in the amounts they asked for.
"Application of the U.S. Department of Justice guidance among the clerks in Wisconsin is not uniform," the memo says.
YORKVILLE — The Racine County Sheriff’s Office announced in a Thursday morning news conference that it has identified eight cases of what it believes to be election fraud at a Mount Pleasant nursing home.
The memo states that state law gives the Audit Bureau complete access to all records during an audit investigation and federal law and guidance does not prohibit an election official from handing over election records.
Drop boxes were used throughout Wisconsin, including in areas where Trump won the vast majority of counties.
Thousands of ballot certifications examined from Madison are a window onto how elections officials handled a pandemic and a divided and unhelpful state government.
"I don't think that you instill confidence in a process by kind of blindly assuming there's nothing to see here," WILL president and general counsel Rick Esenberg said.
The Associated Press reviewed every potential case of voter fraud in six battleground states — Arizona, Georgia, Michigan, Nevada, Pennsylvan…
The report is the latest to show that there was not widespread fraud in Wisconsin.
The clear insinuation was that someone not qualified to conduct an election improperly influenced these vulnerable voters. But the Wisconsin State Journal could not confirm the data.
The turnout at nursing homes in Brown, Kenosha, Milwaukee and Racine counties in 2020 was not much different from the turnout in 2016.