Congressman Reid Ribble has announced he is not running for reelection, a race that he would have won with ease.
“I feel very fortunate to have a strong marriage, grown children, and three wonderful grandchildren. I want to dedicate more time to them,” Ribble wrote in a statement. “I’ve always said elected office shouldn’t be a career. I come from the private sector and am anxious to return to it and to a more private life.”
Ribble boasted a conservative voting record in the House. He said he was satisfied that he kept two promises he made during his first campaign, cutting discretionary spending and making the Bush tax cuts permanent.
Wisconsin’s Eight Congressional District will now be considered lean GOP/Toss Up.
More than a dozen Republicans (including at least 6 current and former state lawmakers) will contemplate running for the seat. However as supporters line up in different camps, only 4 to 5 will actually follow through, declare, and get on the ballot.
On the Dem side the party will work hard to avoid an expensive competitive primary. As we learned from Tammy Baldwin, Mary Burke and now Russ Feingold’s attempt to get his old job back, in Wisconsin, the Democrats like selections not elections.
What happens on the Republican side will have ripple effects in Madison, as opening may occur there if incumbents try to move ‘up’ to D.C.
Another wrinkle: If Trump is the GOP nominee, the Republicans will have a very tough time keeping the 8th. It will saddle the Republican nominee in an open seat with a candidate at the top of the ticket who has a gigantic gender gap.
Rabble’s decision is a dramatic turn of events.