- Associated Press - Tuesday, October 25, 2016

MADISON, Wis. (AP) - The Latest on the U.S. Senate race between Sen. Ron Johnson and Democrat Russ Feingold (all times local):

11:15 a.m.

Republican Sen. Ron Johnson is continuing with name-calling against his Democratic opponent Russ Feingold in the final weeks of the U.S. Senate race.

Johnson on Tuesday in an interview on WTMJ-AM reaffirmed comments he first made Friday calling Feingold a “phony” for how he’s handled campaign finance, his position on Social Security and defense funding, among others.

But Johnson goes on to say he sees Feingold as a hypocrite and someone he doesn’t respect. Johnson says Feingold has spent six months “lying about me, distorting my record and engaging in class warfare.”

Feingold’s campaign manager Tom Russell says in a new memo that Johnson is engaging in a “hysterical scorched-earth strategy of nasty personal attacks” because he knows he’s going to lose.


10:45 a.m.

Republican Sen. Ron Johnson is making a plea to Republicans who oppose presidential nominee Donald Trump.

Johnson said in an interview Tuesday on WTMJ-AM that Republicans who were “discouraged” with Trump should “set that aside” to vote for Johnson. He is in a tough re-election battle with Democratic former Sen. Russ Feingold.

Polls have shown both Trump and Johnson trailing their Democratic opponents in Wisconsin, but Johnson has typically polled better than Trump.

Johnson supports Trump but he has not campaigned with him in Wisconsin. Feingold has called on Johnson to join other Republicans and pull his backing of Trump, but Johnson has refused to do so.


10:15 a.m.

Republican U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson will be campaigning in Wisconsin this week with three of his GOP colleagues from the Senate.

And House Speaker Paul Ryan, along with Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, were also to participate in a bus tour in the waning days of the race to help Johnson.

Johnson was making two stops on Tuesday in Onalaska and Janesville with Sen. David Perdue, of Georgia. South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham was to campaign in Wisconsin on Thursday, with Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst coming Saturday.

Also on Tuesday, a super PAC called the Reform America Fund announced it was launching a new ad attacking Feingold over his support for President Barack Obama’s Iran nuclear deal. The group’s spokesman Chris Martin would not say how large the buy is.


10 a.m.

Democratic Senate candidate Russ Feingold’s campaign manager says Republican Sen. Ron Johnson is taking a “hysterical scorched-earth strategy of nasty personal attacks” in the waning days of the race.

Feingold’s campaign manager Tom Russell says in a memo released Tuesday that Johnson has taken to calling Feingold a “phony” the past week because the race is not headed in Johnson’s favor.

Russell points to early voting numbers showing about 30 percent of in-person absentee ballots have been cast in Wisconsin’s two most heavily Democratic counties. He also refers to public polling that’s consistently shown Feingold to be ahead and 118,000 donations Feingold has received from 50,000 people in Wisconsin.

Russell says Johnson’s approach is reminding voters less of former Gov. Tommy Thompson and more of Donald Trump.


8:55 a.m.

House Speaker Paul Ryan plans to spend the last four days before the election on a bus tour campaigning across Wisconsin with Sen. Ron Johnson and other Republicans.

Ryan has been traveling the country to help Republicans running for the House and Senate, but he will return his full attention to Wisconsin from Nov. 4 through Nov. 7, the day before the election.

Johnson is in a tough re-election battle with former Democratic Sen. Russ Feingold.

Ryan’s campaign says he plans to join the Wisconsin Republican bus tour for stops in his southeastern congressional district, western Wisconsin and the Green Bay area. That is where Republican Mike Gallagher is running for Congress in an open seat against Democrat Tom Nelson.

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