The Latest: 'Iron Stache' says he scared off Paul Ryan
MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- The Latest on possible candidates for Congress in House Speaker Paul Ryan's district (all times local):
Democrat Randy Bryce says his challenge to Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan is what forced him to retire.
Bryce, known by his nickname "Iron Stache," said Wednesday that "the repeal part is done now and we have to work just as hard now with the replace part."
Ryan's top political adviser, Kevin Seifert, says it's "laughable" to suggest that Ryan decided against seeking re-election because of Bryce's challenge.
Another Democrat, Janesville teacher Cathy Myers, is also running. Numerous Republicans are now considering entering the race.
Bryce says the challenge for Democrats will be sustaining enthusiasm into the fall.
The leader of House Speaker Paul Ryan's campaign team says Ryan has no plans to endorse if there is a Republican primary in the race to replace him.
However, Kevin Seifert says Ryan is committed to keeping the seat that he has held for 20 years in Republican hands. Seifert said Wednesday that Ryan's team "will work tirelessly so Republicans keep this seat."
Numerous Republicans, including several state office holders, are considering running.
The only declared candidate is far-right conservative Paul Nehlen, who has been barred from Twitter for racist and anti-Semitic posts and who Ryan defeated by 68 points in 2016. Seifert says Nehlen isn't qualified for the seat and his "bigoted rhetoric and his reprehensible statements should disqualify him from holding any public office."
Possible Republican candidates to run in House Speaker Paul Ryan's southeast Wisconsin congressional district aren't saying much about whether they will jump in.
Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos is praising Ryan as "perhaps the best congressman Wisconsin has ever sent to Washington," but not addressing whether he will run for the spot.
State Rep. Samantha Kerkman isn't ruling it out, saying: "Hey, it's the year of the woman. There's a lot to think about."
Other possible candidates, including state Sen. David Craig, state Rep. Tyler August and attorney Bryan Steil (STYLE), aren't commenting on their plans.
Former White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus also used to live in the district. He praised Ryan on Twitter, but didn't say if he's thinking about returning to Wisconsin for a run.
With Republican House Speaker Paul Ryan deciding against re-election, the focus turns to other Republicans who could run for his southeast Wisconsin congressional seat.
Among those mentioned by Republicans as possible candidates are Wisconsin Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, attorney and University of Wisconsin Board of Regents member Bryan Steil and state Sen. David Craig.
None of them have returned messages seeking comment Wednesday.
Former state Republican Party executive director Brandon Scholz says Vos is the most logical choice.
Democrats Randy Bryce, a union iron worker, and Janesville school teacher Cathy Myers are already running. Bryce spokesman Lauren Hitt says "Paul Ryan decided to quit today rather than face Randy Bryce and the voters."