Bolton to spend $1M boosting Wisconsin Senate candidate

A super PAC run by former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations John Bolton will spend $1 million on an ad buy for Wisconsin Republican Senate candidate Kevin Nicholson, according to a statement from the group.

In a press release Wednesday, Bolton cited Nicholson's service in Iraq and Afghanistan as a U.S. Marine as a reason for his support. Nicholson is currently facing state Sen. Leah Vukmir in the GOP primary to determine who will face Sen. Tammy BaldwinTammy Suzanne BaldwinTrade wars and the over-valued dollar Overnight Health Care: Senate panel advances drug pricing bill amid GOP blowback | House panel grills Juul executives | Trump gives boost to state drug import plans | Officials say new migrant kids' shelter to remain open but empty Senators vow to bring transparency to drug pricing MORE (D) this November.

“As a highly decorated U.S. Marine veteran who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, Kevin fundamentally understands what it takes to keep America safe," Bolton said in the statement.


"I know he will strengthen our military to eliminate ISIS and keep our adversaries at bay," he said, referring to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria terror group.

"I support Kevin and look forward to him being the GOP nominee because he is best suited to support policies that protect the U.S. abroad and he can defeat Tammy Baldwin in 2018.”

The Wisconsin Democratic Party reacted to news of Bolton's ad buy by condemning Bolton and "out-of-state special interests" trying to influence state politics.

"Right-wing, out-of-state special interests are pouring millions into Wisconsin to buy Kevin Nicholson a seat in the U.S. Senate, where he's pledged to protect the corrupt Washington status quo. Unfortunately for Nicholson, John Bolton, Steve BannonStephen (Steve) Kevin BannonThe specter of Steve Bannon may loom over 2020 Trump campaign Sunday shows - Trump's Epstein conspiracy theory retweet grabs spotlight Steve Bannon: 'President Trump is not a racist' MORE and Illinois billionaire Dick Uihlein aren't eligible to vote in the Wisconsin Senate election," said Brad Bainum, a state party spokesman.

The donation marks Bolton's first political expenditure of 2018, according to the release, which Bolton said was part of his efforts to help Republicans maintain control of the Senate. The GOP holds the upper chamber with a shaky 51-49 majority after Doug Jones (D-Ala.) joined the Senate on Wednesday.

"This significant ad buy is a testament to my dedication to ensuring Republicans maintain the majority in the Senate this year. Kevin has my full support and I look forward to his leadership in Congress,” Bolton added in the press release.

Garret Marquis, a spokesman for the PAC, said that Nicholson's Marine background would allow him to be a "leader in Congress" as a supporter of tough national security policies.

“The John Bolton Super PAC independently supports candidates, such as Kevin Nicholson, who can be leaders in Congress and are committed to restoring strong American economic and national security policies that secure America's interests in a challenging world," Marquis said.

On Nicholson's foreign policy section of his website, he pledges to "make sure we don’t allow foreign actors to cross red lines." He also says he will fight to reduce the national debt.

-Updated 7:25 p.m.