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Image: Mandela Barnes
Mandela Barnes speaks to the press during a campaign rally in Milwaukee, Wis., on Sept. 24, 2022.Scott Olson / Getty Images

Midterm elections roundup: A tough Thursday for Barnes in Wisconsin

The latest news and developments from key 2022 midterm races.

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new story in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel details a litany of controversial tweets from Democrat Mandela Barnes that touch on a whole variety of issues. 

As detailed by the Journal Sentinel, his tweets included him panning “progressives moving to the center” as people who are “compromising all integrity to appease the extreme.” In another that’s likely to find its way into an ad soon, he jokingly referred to New York Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez as “my president.”  He also asked if the 2016 election was “rigged.”

And after Louisiana Republican Rep. Steve Scalise said that being shot didn’t change his views on gun control, Barnes tweeted, “Taking one for the team. I question how people vote against self interest but this is next level. He literally almost died on this hill.”

Hours later, Fox News released a poll that showed Republican Sen. Ron Johnson leading Barnes 48%-44%, a shift from Barnes’ 50%-46% lead in the August Fox News poll. Johnson’s supporters in the poll also are more likely to describe themselves as enthusiastic about their candidate. And 44% voiced concerns that Barnes’ views are too extreme, an increase from 30% who said the same in August (43% said the same of Johnson).

Elsewhere on the campaign trail:

New Hampshire Senate: Despite concerns that Republican Don Bolduc may not be able to win the seat, the NRSC just booked another $1.1 million on the airwaves in the race. And Axios reports that a memo from Democratic Sen. Maggie Hassan’s campaign manager stressed to donors that it will take “significant investment” to ensure a Hassan victory.

Nevada Senate: Club for Growth Action is booking $3.9 million in TV ads to boost Republican Adam Laxalt, per AdImpact. 

Pennsylvania Senate: The Philadelphia Inquirer reports that former Republican Gov. Tom Ridge, who backed Joe Biden in 2020, is endorsing Republican Mehmet Oz

Utah Senate: Club for Growth Action is up with a new ad with women watching footage of independent Evan McMullin and calling him a “charlatan” and an “opportunist,” questioning his claimed bipartisanship. 

Georgia Governor: Democrat Stacey Abrams is targeting Black men in her race for governor, the Associated Press reports.

Iowa Governor: Democratic nominee Deidre DeJear is booking $445,000 on television in her first major ad buy, per AdImpact. 

Texas Governor: Republican Gov. Greg Abbott is booking another $3.5 million on TV ads, bringing his ad-spending total in the race to $32.7 million, per AdImpact.