ASHWAUBENON, Wis. (WFRV) – Wisconsin Lieutenant Governor and Democratic candidate from the U.S. Senate Mandela Barnes was in the Village of Ashwaubenon on Tuesday to meet with labor leaders and workers to discuss a vision to rebuild the middle class.

UAW Local 578 was in attendance to talk with Barnes about lowering costs while bringing jobs and supply chains back to the State of Wisconsin.

“My dad is still very active with the UAW,” said Barnes while talking to the crowd. “My mother spent 30 years as a public school teacher, active in the teachers union. I would not be here today if it were not for that foundation they laid for me.”

Barnes talked heavily about his opponent in the November Election, Republican incumbent Ron Johnson. Barnes continuously brought up how Ron Johnson outsourced jobs at Oshkosh Defense and took away opportunities from families.

“It’s more than just 1,000 jobs at Oshkosh Defense,” explained Barnes. “This is 1,000 opportunities for family-sustaining wages, for children to grow up in a household and be able to chase their wildest dreams. To be that out of touch is shameful.”

With rising prices at the gas pump and at the grocery store, Mandela Barnes voiced his support for members of the UAW.

“We’re stronger together than we are divided and that’s how we’re going to show up. In mass, we’re going to organize in communities all across the State of Wisconsin reminding folks that nobody is going to get left behind,” said Barnes.

Barnes also talked to the media about his reasoning on why he did not appear with United States President Joe Biden, who was visiting Wisconsin over Labor Day.

“We had a pretty packed schedule and had to get around the state. I’m really grateful that the president has shown his support for the labor movement here in Wisconsin. We were actually in Racine to take groceries down to striking UAW workers, people who have been out there for about 120 days or more and that’s where my priorities have been.”

Ben Voelkel, the senior advisor for the Johnson Campaign also spoke to the media and was critical of Mandela Barnes dodging President Biden’s visit to Wisconsin.

“After [Barnes] called on [Biden] to come to Wisconsin and campaign for him, or whether it’s his continued support for these far-left extremist policies that are so out of line with average Wisconsin voters, I think people have a lot of questions for Mandela Barnes and it’s time that he starts answering them,” stated Voelkel.

Barnes will face Ron Johnson on Tuesday, November 8 for a seat in the U.S. Senate.