Tim Ramthun (R) is a state representative who has served in the Wisconsin State Assembly since January 2019, representing the 59th district. Prior to being elected to office, he claims to have been a management consultant and executive for “multiple” Fortune 100 and Fortune 500 companies despite having never earned a college degree and without specifying who he worked for or what he actually did.
Ramthun intended to run for governor of Wisconsin in 2022, but lost to Trump-endorsed millionaire Tim Michels in the GOP primary. During the campaign, he promised to decertify the state’s 2020 presidential election results (despite the legal impossibility of doing so), an effort that he has repeatedly made as an assembly member. Observers of Wisconsin politics such as Bruce Murphy of Urban Milwaukee have note that Ramthun’s fringe views on the 2020 election led other Republican candidates for governor to question the legitimacy of polling security and Biden’s win.
The Big Lie
- On Jan. 5, 2021, Ramthun signed a letter with several other state officials urging then-Vice President Mike Pence not to certify the Electoral College results confirming Biden’s win of the 2020 presidential election.
- In the years since the election, Ramthun has continued to call for the decertification of Wisconsin’s Electoral College votes. In October 2021, he stated: “I have continued to pursue the truth and integrity of our 2020 general election. Recent developments have made it abundantly clear that the legislature should not have certified Wisconsin’s 10 electoral ballots on December 14, 2020.”
- In January 2022, Ramthun’s repeated efforts to “reclaim” Wisconsin’s Electoral College votes and his ongoing advocacy of conspiracy theories led to discipline by the State Assembly. Prior to that, he had falsely accused Wisconsin State Assembly Speaker Robin Vos (R) of signing a deal with attorneys for former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton to authorize absentee ballot drop boxes.
- When launching his gubernatorial campaign in February 2022, Ramthun proclaimed, “I’m not a quitter and I’m not quitting. I need to exhaust options to address the November 2020 election. It’s an assault on our constitution and it’s a national security issue.”
- In March 2022, Speaker Vos kicked Ramthun out of a meeting about decertifying Wisconsin’s Electoral College votes when the speaker pointed out that it would be illegal to do so and Ramthun responded by saying that he wanted to “punch” Vos “right in the nose.”
- Ramthun made overturning the 2020 election results in Wisconsin the centerpiece of his campaign for governor in 2022, an effort that various legal scholars deemed impossible. Although he lost the Republican primary race, his extremism pushed other candidates to take similarly subversive stances mirroring Trumped-up conspiracies about election integrity.
- Ramthun supported a forensic audit of the 2020 election results in Wisconsin to see if folded or printed ballots were counted in Wisconsin as they were in Georgia and Arizona. In defense of the proposal, he claimed that “we need to create transparency and settle the debate of truth vs. conspiracy…. There is nothing of greater importance than ensuring that we uphold our constitutional rights to have a government of, by, and for the people.”
- To support his calls for further audits of the 2020 election, Ramthun promised on his gubernatorial campaign website that he would demand an audit of his own election results. On his campaign website, Ramthun proclaimed he would call for a “full forensic physical cyber audit for the November 2022 election, beginning with my race regardless of the outcome.”