John Nygren

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John Nygren
Nygren john.jpg
Wisconsin State Assembly District 89
In office
2007 - Present
Term ends
January 5, 2015
Years in position 8
Base salary$49,943/year
Per diem$88/day
Elections and appointments
Last electionNovember 6, 2012
First elected2006
Next generalNovember 4, 2014
Term limitsN/A
Date of birth02/27/1964
Place of birthMarinette, WI
ProfessionInsurance/Financial Representative
Office website
John Nygren (b. February 27, 1964) is a Republican member of the Wisconsin State Assembly, representing District 89. He was first elected to the chamber in 2006.


Nygren has worked as an insurance/financial representative, and restaurant owner.[1]

Committee assignments


At the beginning of the 2013 legislative session, Nygren served on the following committees:

Wisconsin Committee Assignments, 2013
Employment Relations
Employment Relations
Joint Finance, Co-chair
Joint Legislative Audit
Joint Legislative Council


During the 2011-2012 legislative session, Nygren served on these committees:


During the 2009-2010 legislative session, Nygren served on these committees:


Legislation sponsored in 2009 includes:

  • AJR-51 Sovereignty under the 10th Amendment to the Constitution of the United States over all powers not otherwise enumerated and granted to the federal government by the U.S. Constitution claimed; federal mandates provision
  • AR-7 Rate increases re sales tax, income tax, or franchise tax: two-thirds majority vote in Assembly required for passage, concurrence, and adoption

For a full listing of sponsored legislation and details see the House site.

Online sales tax

In September 2013, Nygren supported the closing of an online sales tax loophole in order to cut income taxes in Wisconsin. "Research shows that if Congress closes the online sales tax loophole and Wisconsin uses the additional sales tax revenue to cut income taxes — as the state budget provision requires — our state will see over 23,000 new jobs and an additional $7.6 billion pumped into our economy,” Nygren wrote in an op-ed piece.[2]

Campaign themes


Nygren's website highlighted the following campaign themes:

  • Jobs & The Economy - "We must invest in our people to ensure that they are properly trained for the jobs of today, and tomorrow. I support tax credits for employer assisted higher education so that employers might invest in its employees."
  • Taxes - "Reducing our tax burden is a top priority. I will work to eliminate job and innovation killing taxes such as the Wisconsin’s Death Tax and Internet Tax."
  • Government Spending - "A good place to start saving taxpayer money is to stop giving taxpayer-funded benefits (including free College tuition) to illegal aliens. I support legislation, vetoed by Governor Doyle, to stop illegal aliens from raiding our tax dollars."
  • Healthcare - "People need access to information on hospitals and doctors in order to be smart consumers. Giving more power to health care users will help keep costs down as providers compete for their business. I will continue to support legislation that would require disclosure of these costs to you, the consumer."
  • Gun rights - "I am a strong defender of the right of individuals to protect themselves, I oppose efforts by those who would trample on our constitutionally protected rights to keep and bear arms."
  • Ethics and Campaign Finance - "Open, honest government is the only way to combat unethical political behavior. One way to ensure that our system is clean is full disclosure. If everyone can see what elected officials are doing, unethical behavior is reduced."



See also: Wisconsin State Assembly elections, 2014

Elections for all 99 seats in the Wisconsin State Assembly took place in 2014. A primary election took place on August 12, 2014. The general election was held on November 4, 2014. The signature-filing deadline for candidates wishing to run in this election was June 2, 2014. Incumbent John Nygren was unopposed in the Republican primary. Nygren was unopposed in the general election,[3][4] and was re-elected for another term.[5]


See also: Wisconsin State Assembly elections, 2012

Nygren won re-election in the 2012 election for Wisconsin State Assembly District 89. Nygren ran unopposed in the Republican primary on August 14 and defeated Joe Reinhard in the general election on November 6, 2012.[6][7]

Wisconsin State Assembly, District 89, General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngJohn Nygren Incumbent 59.1% 16,081
     Democratic Joe Reinhard 40.9% 11,129
     - Scattering 0.1% 22
Total Votes 27,232

2011 recall

See also: Recall of Wisconsin State Senators (2011) and Dave Hansen recall, Wisconsin State Senate (2011)

Nygren announced on May 10 that he would run against Democratic state Sen. Dave Hansen in a recall election.[8] Mary Scray, vice chair of the Brown County Board, had considered running, but endorsed Nygren instead.[9][10] About 18,872 signatures were filed against Hansen on April 21, seeking his recall.

In announcing his candidacy, Nygren criticized Hansen for fleeing to Illinois to prevent a vote on the Scott Walker Budget Repair Bill. Nygren said Hansen "walked off the job, fled the state of Wisconsin, and literally turned his back on the people he swore an oath to represent."[11]

David VanderLeest, who organized the recall campaign, also declared for the seat.[12] VanderLeest and Nygren were to face off in a primary on July 19, with the winner facing Hansen in the recall on August 16. However, Nygren was removed from the ballot for insufficient valid signatures on his nomination papers. He contested the decision in circuit court, but it was upheld.[13]

Nominating papers challenged

The Democratic Party of Wisconsin filed challenges against the nominating papers of Nygren, Kim Simac, Robert Lussow and David VanderLeest on June 24. The Wisconsin Government Accountability Board considered the challenges on June 27,[14] certifying all of the candidates except for Nygren. While he turned in 424, the Board found only 398 of those to be valid, two short of the 400 necessary to make the ballot.[15]

Nygren did not file any correcting affidavits by the 27th, as was required by GAB regulations. Additionally, there was no explanatory response for controversial signatures. Nygren’s response to the challenges did contain many affidavits and responses, but did not seemingly cover all of the challenges filed by the Democratic Party. GAB staff used google maps and their laptops to go one-by-one through many of the signature challenges during the meeting. Before the board officially voted to certify only 398 signatures, the attorney for Nygren argued that Nygren should still be certified because two signatures is so minute, and that the policy should be one of the utmost ballot access.

Nygren appealed the GAB decision in circuit court,[16] but the original decision was upheld. Nygren blamed the outcome on “Democrat-appointed GAB staff that has constantly worked against me as I defended myself from the Democratic Party’s frivolous challenges.”[17]


Certification challenge delays

On May 27, 2011, the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board announced it would be unable to consider the recall petitions for the three Democratic incumbents at the May 31, 2011 meeting. Citing "numerous factual and legal issues," the Board said in its statement that more time is needed to ensure that a complete record will be available for examination -- particularly since the decision will likely be appealed to the courts.[18]

In its release, the GAB officials said they do not expect to be able to hold a hearing on the recalls of Democratic incumbents until the week of June 6. This raises potential legal issues, as the initial extension granted to GAB for certification required it to ultimately make determinations before June 3.[18]

The board went ahead with hearings on May 31 for the recalls of Republican incumbents Sheila Harsdorf, Robert Cowles and Alberta Darling.[19] Officials released a 125-page memo on May 27, 2011 concerning the signatures and legal challenges.

The GAB filed a brief on June 1 asking the court for a one-week extension, which would give them until June 10 to finish working on the three Democratic recalls. The case was heard in Dane County Court at 1:30 pm on Friday, June 3.[20][21] Dane County Judge John Markson ruled that there was good cause for the extension, and that the GAB did not violate any rules by taking up the petitions out of order.[22]

Ultimately, on June 8, after nearly 9 hours of deliberations, the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board certified the recalls of three Democratic incumbents and set an initial election for July 19.[23]


See also: Wisconsin State Assembly elections, 2010

Nygren was re-elected to Wisconsin State Assembly District 89. He defeated Democrat Bob Orwig in the general election on November 2, 2010. He was unopposed in the September 14, 2010, primary election.[24]

Wisconsin State Assembly, District 89 General Election (2010)
Candidates Votes
Green check mark transparent.png John Nygren (R) 15,788
Bob Orwig (D) 7,520
Wisconsin State Assembly, District 89 Republican Primary (2010)
Candidates Votes Percent
Green check mark transparent.png John Nygren (R) 4,805 99.81

Campaign donors

Comprehensive donor information for Nygren is available dating back to 2006. Based on available campaign finance records, Nygren raised a total of $265,362 during that time period. This information was last updated on June 7, 2013.[25]

John Nygren's Campaign Contribution History
Year Office Result Contributions
2012 Wisconsin State Assembly, District 89 Won $122,212
2010 Wisconsin State Assembly, District 89 Won $48,952
2008 Wisconsin State Assembly, District 89 Won $53,554
2006 Wisconsin State Assembly, District 89 Won $40,644
Grand Total Raised $265,362


Nygren won re-election to the Wisconsin State Assembly in 2012. During that election cycle, Nygren raised a total of $122,212.


Nygren won re-election to the Wisconsin State Assembly in 2010. During that election cycle, Nygren raised a total of $48,952.


Nygren won re-election to the Wisconsin State Assembly in 2008. During that election cycle, Nygren raised a total of $53,554.


Nygren won election to the Wisconsin State Assembly in 2006. During that election cycle, Nygren raised a total of $40,644.


Nygren is a lifetime member and former national president of the Jaycees, former chair of the Marinette County Grand Old Party, and former President of the Marinette Kiwanis.[1]

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External links

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  1. 1.0 1.1 Project Vote Smart, "Biography," accessed May 5, 2014
  2., "Closing online sales tax loophole will create WI jobs," September 6, 2013
  3. Wisconsin Government Accountability, "Candidates Registered by Office," June 11, 2014
  4. Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, "2014 Partisan Primary Candidates," accessed June 19, 2014
  5. Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, "Canvass Results for 2014 General Election," December 1, 2014
  6. Government Accountability Board, "2012 Fall Partisan Primary," accessed May 5, 2014
  7. Government Accountability Board, "2012 Fall General Election," accessed May 5, 2014
  8. Daily Reporter, "Wisconsin GOP assemblyman to run against Democratic senator in recall election," May 10, 2011
  9. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Wisconsin Senate recall races tempt Assembly members," April 30, 2011
  10. Green Bay Press Gazette, "Republican Mary Scray withdraws from state Sen. Dave Hansen recall election," May 26, 2011
  11. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "4th Assembly member announces recall candidacy," May 10, 2011
  12. WTAQ, "'Recall Dave Hansen' organizer running for Senate," May 22, 2011
  13. FOX 11, “Nygren’s name will not be on ballot,” July 1, 2011
  14. Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Challenges filed against 4 GOP candidates in recall races," June 25, 2011
  15. WisPolitics, “GAB kicks Nygren off the ballot,” June 27, 2011
  16. Wis Politics “Nygren vows to pursue further legal options,” June 27, 2011
  17. WisPolitics, “Nygren Campaign: Statement following Dane County court decision,” July 1, 2011
  18. 18.0 18.1 Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Review of recall petitions going slowly; July 12 election in doubt," May 27, 2011
  19. Greenfield Reporter, "Wis. election officials delay decision on recall petitions for Dems, may need date change," May 27, 2011
  20. WisPolitics, "GAB formally asks judge for more time to consider recall petitions against Dems," June 1, 2011
  21. Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel, "State board requests more time to review recall petitions," June 1, 2011
  22. NBC 15, "UPDATE: Judge Grants Week Extension for Recall Review," June 3, 2011
  23. WISN, “GAB Certifies 3 Democratic Recall Elections,” June 8, 2011
  24. Wisconsin Government Accountability Board, "Official 2010 Primary election results," accessed April 25, 2014
  25., "Nygren, John," accessed June 7, 2013
Political offices
Preceded by
Wisconsin State Assembly District 89
Succeeded by