KENOSHA — House Speaker Paul Ryan’s challenger gained national attention this week, after Donald Trump took his time to throw his support behind Ryan. A small crowd of supporters gathered in a Kenosha parking lot, to rally behind Paul Nehlen as he tries to court more voters before Tuesday’s election.
The conservative columnist, Ann Coulter, threw her support behind Paul Ryan’s challenger and joined Nehlen to campaign on Saturday, August 6th.
Nehlen found himself in the spotlight earlier in the week when Trump initially hesitated to endorse House Speaker Paul Ryan in his re-election bid. Trump fueled further speculation when he reached out to Nehlen on social media.
“I’m sure it’s helped but, you know, it came to me in a form of a tweet, a thank you tweet from an article that I wrote, or a letter that I wrote and I said ‘you’re welcome’ — so yeah, I guess it brought a lot of media attention,” said Nehlen.
Nehlen trekked to Green Bay on Friday, to rally with Trump supporters, and says he wasn’t allowed in.
“When it became apparent that they were not going to let me in I said, ‘hey — I’m on the list to get in’ and they said ‘well, you’re not coming in. Y ou’re going to have to go stand across the street,'” Nehlen said.
Trump then endorsed Speaker Ryan.
Nehlen brushed off the move on Saturday, saying he’s confident he’ll do well when voters head to the polls on Tuesday. But Ryan supporters said there’s a stark difference between the candidates.
“I was with Paul (Ryan) yesterday, at an event and really he had five points. It was very concise. He talked about what he wants to do, whereas Mr. Nehlen talks about bashing Paul,” said State Representative Samantha Kerkman.
Kerkman is backing Ryan. And despite Nehlen’s confidence heading into election day, she said Speaker Ryan remains well liked by many in his district.
“I can’t wait for Tuesday to come so that we can re elect Paul, send him back to Congress,” Kerkman said.
Nehlen blamed the Republican Party of Wisconsin for his not being able to get into the Trump rally on Friday.
Pat Garrett, Republican Party of Wisconsin spokesman said this in a statement to FOX6 News:
“The Republican Party of Wisconsin was not involved in the decision to remove Mr. Nehlen from the Trump rally in Green Bay.”
FOX6 News reached out to the Trump campaign for comment. Our message to the Trump campaign has not been returned.