In a recent piece for the Milwaukee Magazine, Larry Sandler writes about the “Rise of Ron Johnson.”
Colleagues see it, too. When Johnson dines with fellow Republicans in Wisconsin’s congressional delegation, Fond du Lac U.S. Rep. Tom Petri says, “He’s very pleasant,” but “he’s always kind of goal-oriented,” with “sort of a laser-like focus” on budget issues.
It’s just what you would expect from an accountant who left a career in business on a mission to rein in federal spending.
But what no one expected – and what few people know – is how quickly this novice lawmaker would master the Capitol’s political arithmetic. Not even halfway into the first term of his first elected office, congressional insiders say Johnson has quietly become a key player in behind-the-scenes talks on major fiscal issues.
Thus far in his career as a U.S. Senator, Ron Johnson has lost a leadership election, lost a key committee assignment and has had a spate of high-profile staff turnover, but he’s “very pleasant,” so clearly he’s a Senator on the rise.
2016 can’t come soon enough for me.