Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett will not run for governor

NOW: Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett will not run for governor

MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- Milwaukee mayor Tom Barrett says he will not be running for governor in 2018.

Barrett says he gave the run serious consideration, but decided to stay mayor and spend more time with family.

"I absolutely love being the mayor of the city of Milwaukee, and that's where my heart is, and so I hope to continue for many years as the mayor of Milwaukee."

Barrett says he thinks the candidates who are running to oppose Scott Walker will be able to make the race interesting.
"I think it's time after 8 years to have a new governor. Someone who puts the state of Wisconsin ahead of their own national interest."

The ten people who have collected those 2,000 signatures will all be given time to speak at the state Democratic convention in Oshkosh on Friday.

UWM professor Mordecai Lee says the sheer size of the field is an issue.

"If the purpose of the party is to win elections, then the purpose of the primary is to choose someone who has the best chance of winning the November election," Lee said. "When you've got ten candidates, how do you evaluate who's got the best chance of winning the November election, let alone having people coalesce around that person."

Lee says the state's system doesn't help. There are no run off elections if a candidate doesn't win a majority of voters, so he thinks it could take only 20 percent of the primary vote to win.

"So all of the sudden you've got 20 percent of the vote," Lee said. "You've got a plurality. You're the nominee of the Democratic Party, and nobody knows you because a majority voted against you."

The deadline to submit signatures is 5 p.m. on Friday.

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