Rep. Timothy Ramthun, election conspiracy theorist, officially launches bid for governor

KEWASKUM Wis. (CBS 58) -- State Rep. Timothy Ramthun, an election conspiracy theorist, officially entered the governor race after making a campaign announcement at Kewaskum high school on Saturday.

The Republican said he's running because there's "unfinished business" when it comes to looking at issues that occurred during the 2020 presidential election. He also announced he's not running for reelection to focus on his gubernatorial bid.

"I'm not a quitter and I'm not quitting," said Ramthun. "I need to exhaust options to address the November 2020 election. It's an assault on our constitution and it's a national security issue."

Ramthun was joined by supporters and election conspiracy theorists including My Pillow CEO Mike Lindell, who's falsely claimed the election was stolen from former President Donald Trump.

During his announcement, Ramthun touted his illegal and impossible effort to revoke Wisconsin 10 election votes for President Joe Biden. It's the centerpiece of his campaign despite reviews, audits and court rulings finding no widespread voter fraud and determining the election was legitimate.

"I won't stop until we have justice so I'll keep poking," he said. "I'm all in. I'm going to do a full, forensic, cyber audit of the 2022 gubernatorial election."

"I want everything to be revisited and reviewed fully and forensic because if we're not going to get closure in 2020 and justice, we're going to need to continue to pursue that in every election until we get it right."

Ramthun shakes up the GOP primary and joins former Lt. Governor Rebecca Kleefisch and Marine Veteran Kevin Nicholson, where one candidate will eventually square off against incumbent Democratic Gov. Tony Evers in November.

Ramthun has been publicly praised by former President Donald Trump for his attempts to overturn the 2020 election, which legal experts have said is impossible.

Kleefisch and Nicholson are also vying for Trump's support in the battleground state.

A spokesman for Tony Evers campaign said in a statement, "the Republican candidates in this race are so desperate to divide our state, and even their own party, that they’ll embrace radical conspiracies and pander to a disgraced pillow salesman instead of doing what’s best for our state."

It was anticipated Ramthun would enter the race after his campaign website was briefly up on Wednesday before it was taken down. The campaign site is now up and running, laying out Ramthun priorities such as banning critical race theory, backing law enforcement and cutting taxes.

Chair of the Democratic Party of Wisconsin, Ben Wikler, also slammed Ramthun for entering the race calling him the "most dangerously conservative lawmaker in the county."

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