Johnson was born in Mankato, Minnesota, the son of Jeanette Elizabeth (née Thisius) and Dale Robert Johnson. His father was of Norwegian descent and his mother was of German ancestry. After graduating from the University of Minnesota, he married Jane, the daughter of the businessman Howard Curler, co-founder of Curwod Industries, now part of the multinational Bemis Company. Johnson worked as an accountant for Jostens, a high school- and college class ring supplier, as well a sports-championship ring supplier, including for the Super Bowl, while attending night school for an MBA. He completed his classes, but did not receive his degree because he did not finish his thesis. In 1979, Johnson moved to Wisconsin with his wife, and both started working for PACUR, a custom sheet extruder company, with his wife’s brother, Patrick Curler, for whom the company is named. … The 2010 U.S. Senate campaign was Johnson’s first run for elective office. He was described as a “political blank slate” because he had no history of campaigning or taking a position as an elected official.… As of November 1, 2010, Johnson had contributed more than $8.2 million to his own campaign, representing 64% of total campaign contributions.… After being elected to the Senate, Johnson “sold every liquid asset so there would be absolutely no chance for conflict of interest.” Johnson was not required to sell these holdings.
- Johnson introduced S. 1438, the Regulation Moratorium and Job Preservation Act, which would impose a moratorium on new federal regulations until the national employment level falls to 7.7%, below where it was when President Obama took office in his first tenure. An example of a regulation to be blocked, the EPA Boiler MACT rule.
- Months before the US debt-ceiling crisis, Senator Johnson presented an opportunity to establish hard caps on federal spending. He stated that Congress could not keep raising the debt limit, and needed to prioritize spending. He also spoke up against the closed-door talks and described them as outrageous and disgusting. He further noted that default should not have been a concern, given that the government had plenty of funding to pay interest on debt, Social Security benefits, and salary for soldiers.
- In January of 2010, Senator Johnson testified before the Wisconsin Senate opposing a Wisconsin bill that would have eliminated the time limit for future child, sex abuse victims to bring lawsuits and allowed an additional three years for past victims to sue. His stance was that the bill, if enacted, might actually reduce the reporting of child sex abuse. He was criticized by the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, and by his political opponent, Feingold.
- As a candidate in 2010, Ron Johnson strongly opposed the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. He told the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel:
We would have been far better off not spending any of the money and let the recover happen as it was going to happen.
- In general, Ron Johnson opposed increased government spending and the federal stimulus; instead supporting a broad reduction in federal tax rates, simplifying business regulations, and free-market health care solutions.
- During the continued controversy over global warming (not climate change), Ron Johnson did not denounce that unusual weather and climate patterns were occurring, but stated that scientists who attribute global warming to man-made causes are crazy, making the theory as lunacy. He stated, which many reputable scientists agree, that climate change is due to –
…sunspot activity or just something in the geologic eons of time.
- Johnson is opposed to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, and in an op-ed article written for the Wall Street Journal, Johnson mentioned his personal experience with his daughter. The act would, Johnson stated:
…lead to rationed care, lower the quality of care, increase medical costs, and severely limit medical innovation … this law will add trillions of dollars to our nation’s debt and deficit. …
- In the argument over more drilling in the United States and its territories and less foreign oil, Senator Johnson was asked about his policy concerning offshore drilling for oil in the Great Lakes, and replied:
We have to get the oil where it is, but we need to do it responsibly. We need to utilize American ingenuity and American technology to make sure we do it environmentally sensitively and safely.
- In the area of social issues, Senator Johnson is opposed to same-sex marriage. In a 2010 article at Wisconsin Gazette (August 11th 2010), Johnson defined freedom …
On his website, Johnson declares himself “a pretty traditional guy” and goes on to say that he believes “marriage is between one man and one women.” He assures visitors to his site that he will “take these principles with him to Washington and will stand up to those who would attack these cherished traditional values.”
|Partial Comment by GOP aide|
- Ron Johnson appeared at a Tea Party rally on Tax Day, April 15th 2010 in Madison, Wisconsin.
- Ron Johnson has served on the Committee on Appropriations, Committee on Budget, and the Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs; as well as a Special Committee on Aging.
- In 2010 election, Ron Johnson received 85% of the Republican Primary election votes and won against Russ Feingold (incumbent) for US Senate by a slim margin of 51.86% of the votes.
- Senator Johnson is an advocate for rights under the Second Amendment.