Will Trump’s endorsements in Pennsylvania primary carry over into Wisconsin?

MADISON, Wis. — In the wake of the primary elections in Pennsylvania, in which candidates endorsed by former President Donald Trump had a good night, UW-Madison political science professor Barry Burden said Wisconsin could see a Trump endorsement in the coming months.

“Trump has some time to figure out whether he wants to get more involved in the Wisconsin race,” Burden said, “but based on what he has done in Ohio and Pennsylvania and Georgia and North Carolina and other states, I would not be surprised if he gets involved sometime this summer.”

The former president will likely weigh in on the contentious four-way Republican primary for governor. It’s not necessarily something that all candidates are publicly seeking, but Burden said it could help their cause.

“[Trump’s] magic has not worked in every race,” he said, “but there are at least some high profile races where it looks like his clear backing of a candidate can help elevate that candidate or distinguish them from other Republicans who are also trying to cozy up to the Trump coalition but don’t have his formal blessing.”

“So it’s really important and I think the Republican candidates in Wisconsin are hoping to get it,” Burden added.

In Pennsylvania, there was some in-fighting among Republicans — some of whom thought Trump’s endorsement of a candidate who questioned the results of the 2020 election could drag down turnout this fall. Burden said that may be less of an issue in Wisconsin because all of the Republican gubernatorial candidates have questioned the integrity of 2020.

This also comes ahead of the Republican state party convention this weekend, during which the party may endorse candidates running this fall — or may opt to change the convention rules and endorse no candidate.