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Sen. Ron Johnson walks through the Senate subway to the Capitol, on June 22, 2022.
Sen. Ron Johnson walks through the Senate subway to the Capitol, on June 22, 2022.Bill Clark / CQ Roll Call via AP Images

Midterm roundup: Badger state battleground

Republican Sen. Ron Johnson is launching a new ad attacking Democrats on inflation as polling shows a tight fall matchup.

By and

New polling out of Wisconsin shows that the state's two top statewide contests for governor and Senate are up for grabs in November, findings that illustrate why Republicans have launched a new TV ad blasting Democrats on inflation.

Wisconsin Republican Sen. Ron Johnson and the National Republican Senatorial Committee don't know which Democrat they will be running against in the fall, so they are largely using their ad time to boost Johnson by cutting down the Democrats more broadly.

That Marquette Law School poll found that all four of the top Democratic Senate hopefuls are currently running within the margin of error against Johnson.

In the Democratic Senate primary, Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes leads the field at 25%, with Milwaukee Bucks executive Alex Lasry just 4 percentage points behind. Every potential general election matchup with GOP Sen. Ron Johnson was within just a few percentage points. 

In the Republican primary for governor, the Marquette poll finds businessman Tim Michels, who has former President Donald Trump’s endorsement, and former Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch are virtually tied at the top, at 27% and 26% respectively. Democratic Gov. Tony Evers’ lead over the GOP field ranges from 4 points to 17 points. 

Elsewhere on the campaign trail:

Arizona Senate: FreedomWorks is hosting a forum with all of the top GOP Senate candidates tonight. 

Missouri Senate: Utah Republican Sen. Mike Lee is endorsing GOP Attorney General Eric Schmitt’s Senate bid. 

Illinois Governor: The Democratic Governors Association is booking another $1.5 million in ad time, per AdImpact, as it looks to sink GOP Aurora Mayor Richard Irvin’s chances in his Republican primary. 

Michigan Governor: Democratic Gov. Gretchen Whitmer told NBC News on Wednesday that she won’t “weigh in’’ on President Joe Biden’s decision whether or not to run for reelection in 2024. And, she added that she’s too busy to consider her own presidential campaign at the moment.

New York Governor: Former Vice President Mike Pence is expected to endorse GOP Rep. Lee Zeldin for governor, per the New York Times.

Alaska At-Large:  A top state elections official said that nonpartisan candidate Al Gross’ withdrawal from the upcoming special House election won’t elevate another candidate into the ranked choice election in August because Gross withdrew too late.  

Illinois-15: Two outside groups (Club for Growth and Conservative Outsiders PAC) backing GOP Rep. Mary Miller have booked $300,000 in TV ad time the final days before next week’s primary, while Miller’s primary opponent, Rep. Rodney Davis, has booked another $123,000 in TV time, per AdImpact.