Lt. Governor Mandela Barnes announced on Tuesday that he is running for a seat in the United States Senate.
I’m Mandela Barnes and I’m running to be Wisconsin’s next Senator.
Hard-working families deserve every opportunity, but politicians like Senator Ron Johnson aren’t delivering. Instead of changing our dreams, we need to change the game. Join us. pic.twitter.com/XzVS3WHqQf
— Mandela Barnes (@TheOtherMandela) July 20, 2021
“When you stay focused on why you are running, nothing can slow you down,” Barnes said in an announcement video. “I’m Mandela Barnes, I’m running for US Senate, and I’m running for the people of Wisconsin.”
“I believe we need to build a better America, where the opportunity I was able to find isn’t so rare, and America that works for all of us, not just the wealthiest few,” Barnes said, adding that he was running to recognize “the places that for too long people have been left behind.”
There are more than seven candidates in Wisconsin vying to take Republican Senator Ron Johnson‘s seat. The Senator has not announced if he will seek reelection. The election will be held on November 8, 2022.
Barnes saw his national profile increase in 2020 after police officers in Kenosha, Wisconsin, shot Jacob Blake, a Black man. Barnes, the first Black man to serve as a Lieutenant Governor of Wisconsin, was outspoken in his criticism of former President Donald Trump’s plan to visit Kenosha, Wisconsin, after the shooting. Barnes called President Trump “incendiary” and argued the trip was aimed solely at “creating more division.”
“We can, today, build a movement for justice,” Barnes said. “I’m running for the Senate to provide opportunity, to fight for hard-working people.”
“The system isn’t working. You see so many people who are working longer hours and harder, oftentimes for much less,” Barnes said in the announcement video. “Let’s be unabashedly unafraid to work together to change the game.”
Prior to serving as Lt. Governor, Mandela was elected to the State Assembly, where he emerged as a champion on issues of the environment, economy, education, racial justice, and health care.