As Democratic hopefuls look to 2018, one man in Wisconsin has his sights set on the ultimate Republican target in the House of Representatives: Speaker Paul Ryan. Randy Bryce's first campaign ad has already gone viral, establishing the iron worker as a contender in the race.
Bryce officially announced Monday that he would be running against Ryan, and in less than 24 hours, he already raised $100,000. Why? Maybe it has something to do with his advertisement that he released this week, which has been so successful that Bryce himself is surprised. After GQ did a story on him, Bryce tweeted, "And my mom told me I'd never be in @GQMagazine."
Well, he was, and it's all thanks to his moving, to-the-point campaign ad which is blowing up Twitter. It starts with President Trump congratulating Speaker Ryan, and moves to shots of Southeastern Wisconsin and Ryan's voice explaining that repealing and replacing Obamacare means "everybody doesn't get what they want."
Then the story moves on to Bryce's family. His mother explains her health problems and how she depends on insurance to pay for the drugs. Bryce gives her a hug and says:
And from there he explains how he has been working in the iron industry to pay for his and his son's insurance. Yes, the man challenging Ryan is an iron worker and a local labor activist — not to mention an Army vet and cancer survivor. You can't get more working-class relatable than that.
And he's doing his best to connect with these constituents to get them to realize they'd benefit from Bryce heading to Washington over Ryan — if only because of Trump. "They’re handcuffed together,” Bryce told the Wall Street Journal. "People are having buyer’s remorse and they’re seeing what’s going on. Trump made a lot of promises that I can see why working people would support, but now they’re waking up."
The question for 2018 is whether the average voter will buy what he's selling. Bryce is going to do his best to convince them that they need to. His ad continues, "What Paul Ryan and the Republicans are doing to take health care away from millions of us, to make it cost more and cover less, and to allow the protections we've gained to be stripped away – it's just unacceptable."
Whether the people of Wisconsin take Bryce up on his offer, this looks to be the closest yet anyone has come to unseating Ryan. As he would put it, "Let's trade places. Paul Ryan, you can come work the iron, and I'll go to D.C." Now it's time to see if the voters — and fundraisers — agree.