Mandela Barnes is an American politician. A member of the Democratic Party, he currently serves as Wisconsin Lieutenant Governor since 2019. Additionally, he is running against Republican Senator Ron Jhonson in 2022 U.S. Senate election.
Mandela was widely revered for his activism and progressive politics, earning a net worth estimated at $5 Million.
Early Life and Education
Mandela Barnes was born Jesse Mandela Barnes to Jesse and LaJuan in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and lived in one of Milwaukee’s poorest neighborhoods; his mother worked as a public school teacher while his father belonged to United Auto Workers union. He attended Holy Redeemer Private and Milwaukee public schools (John Marshall High School); as well as Alabama A&M University from 2003-2008 (though without ever graduating).
In 2012, Barnes won the Democratic primary for state assembly representing Milwaukee’s 11th District on Milwaukee’s North Side. From 2013- 2018, he served in this capacity before running for governor as Tony Evers’ running mate and earning an annual salary of $80,684. Barnes owns property both in Milwaukee and Madison.
Mandela Barnes, an American politician and member of the Democratic Party, currently serves as Wisconsin’s 45th lieutenant governor. Prior to that he held office as state representative of District 11 from 2013 – 2017.
Barnes was raised by two public school teachers who were members of United Auto Workers unions in Milwaukee. He attended public schools there before graduating with honors from Alabama A&M University’s broadcast journalism major program.
As a politician, Barnes has championed progressive causes like raising the minimum wage, tuition-free college and abolishing cash bail. Additionally, he has spoken out against police brutality and racial injustice.
He is running in the 2022 Wisconsin U.S. Senate election against Republican Senator Ron Johnson, with polls showing him leading.
Achievement and Honors
Mandela Barnes was the first African American ever elected as Wisconsin Lieutenant Governor and has also served on various state boards and commissions such as the Task Force on Climate Change and Health Equity Council. Additionally, he has long advocated for progressive causes like tuition-free college and $15 minimum wages.
Barnes is an active supporter of the Black Lives Matter movement and its push for abolishing cash bail, though his supporters maintain he simply follows in President Barack Obama’s footsteps in this matter.
Barnes was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin to LaJuan and Jesse Barnes and bears his middle name – Mandela – as an honorific tribute to South African anti-apartheid activist Nelson Mandela. He attended Holy Redeemer School and Marshall High School both located within Milwaukee before going on to graduate from Alabama A’and”M University with a degree in communications media.
Born in Milwaukee to LaJuan and Jesse Barnes, Mandela Barnes took his middle name to honor anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela. As Wisconsin’s inaugural African American lieutenant governor – and former state lawmaker – he made history.
He is well-known for his progressive policies and advocacy for social justice, earning the support of numerous notable politicians like Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders.
As a member of the Democratic Party, Barnes stands in line to become governor if current incumbent Tony Evers becomes incapacitated. He currently resides in Milwaukee’s Northwest Side condo and owns property in Madison – both locations possess public health coverage via BadgerCare as well as various sources of earnings that supplement his income.
Barnes has built his political career on progressive public policy principles and his ability to connect with and empower those most affected by economic inequality. He first made waves at a state level level; now as lieutenant governor for Wisconsin.
He supports policies such as a $15 minimum wage, tuition-free college and Medicaid expansion as well as LGBTQ rights and the Black Lives Matter movement.
Barnes relies heavily on his government salary as lieutenant governor as his main source of income, although he also makes donations to numerous social justice causes and campaigns. With family experience dealing with economic challenges first-hand, he understands first-hand what many Americans face when facing these hurdles.