Sen. Ron Johnson Booed After Debate Answer About Rival's 'Admirable' Qualities Backfires

The Trump loyalist and Mandela Barnes were both asked to say something nice about each other. The Democrat obliged, but Johnson went on the attack.
LOADINGERROR LOADING

Moderators of the second debate between Republican Sen. Ron Johnson and his challenger in Wisconsin, Democratic Lt. Gov. Mandela Barnes, tried to end the event on a positive note Thursday, asking each U.S. Senate candidate to say something nice about the other.

But Johnson, a loyalist to former President Donald Trump, just couldn’t bring himself to do it — and ended up getting booed by the audience, who’d already laughed at one of his wilder claims that day.

“So our final question here tonight is: Both of you have been successful in life. You have 30 seconds here. Mr. Barnes, you go first. What do you find admirable about your opponent?” a moderator asked in a video that’s now gone viral.

“I do think, you know, the senator has proven to be a family man, and I think that’s admirable. You know, that’s absolutely to be respected,” Barnes replied. “He speaks about his family. He’s done a lot to provide for them. I absolutely respect that.”

Johnson said he appreciated that his rival, with whom he is in a tight race, “had loving parents, a schoolteacher, father worked third shift,” and basically a “good upbringing.”

Then he added: “I guess what puzzles me about that is with that upbringing, why has he turned against America? I mean, why does he find America awful? It puzzles me.”

The audience was not amused. “We said something ‘admirable,’” the moderator told him, before ending the debate.

Watch the video here:

Popular in the Community

Close

What's Hot