Eau Claire attorney Dana Wachs announced Friday morning he is suspending his campaign for governor, effective immediately, and endorsing Tony Evers, the state’s Superintendent of Public Instruction.
“I have spent my life dedicated to serving my neighbors, friends and the people of the great state of Wisconsin,” Wachs said in a statement announcing the end of his candidacy. “That commitment led me to run for governor, and it is the same commitment that now requires I stand aside.”
On Wednesday, a Marquette poll indicated that Evers led a 10-person Democratic race with 25 percent of the vote. Wachs had 2 percent of the vote. On Thursday, Milwaukee businessman Andy Gronik dropped out of the race; that same poll showed Gronik had 4 percent of the vote. With Wachs and Gronik dropping out, that leaves eight candidates for the Democratic primary.
“Now is the time for unity,” Wachs wrote. “Now is the time to fight for Wisconsin’s future. That is why I’m proud to endorse Tony Evers for governor. He is a good man and a tireless advocate for our schools, workers, and families.”
Wachs continued: “The Republicans are eager to see the Democratic candidates tear each other apart in a nine-way primary. I will not give them that satisfaction.”
Evers thanked Wachs for the endorsement in the press release, saying Dana “ran a good, clean campaign, and I’m honored to have his support in this race.”
Evers added: “But I know together, with Dana’s help, we can beat back the special interests, win in August and beat Scott Walker in November.”
Wachs said it was a difficult decision, and he thanked his family and campaign team for their work.
“Their support inspired me and challenged me over the last year of this campaign,” Wachs said.
It is unclear what is next for Wachs. He gave up his state Assembly seat to focus on his run for governor.