Wis­con­sin ex-race car dri­ver could play spoil­er to GOP’s plans to oust Tam­my Bald­win

MILWAUKEE — Nation­al Repub­li­cans believe they’ve found a cred­i­ble can­di­date to chal­lenge Sen. Tam­my Bald­win (D‑WI) in Wis­con­sin next year.
Busi­ness­man Eric Hov­de has all but decid­ed to announce a run in ear­ly 2024, accord­ing to mul­ti­ple sources, after months of court­ing by the Nation­al Repub­li­can Sen­a­to­r­i­al Com­mit­tee.
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His entry would be a major vic­to­ry for Repub­li­cans after high-pro­file recruits such as Rep. Mike Gal­lagher (R‑WI) passed on a bid. Hov­de, a real estate devel­op­er and bank CEO, has a promis­ing track record — he near­ly defeat­ed Tom­my Thomp­son, the for­mer gov­er­nor of Wis­con­sin, in the Repub­li­can pri­ma­ry for Sen­ate in 2012 — and is will­ing to spend mil­lions, per­haps tens of mil­lions, of his own mon­ey this go-around.
That’s wel­come news for Repub­li­cans in a state that topped $100 mil­lion in can­di­date and out­side spend­ing in last year’s Sen­ate con­test. But the NRSC has a prob­lem on its hands — one too many wealthy busi­ness­men are int …