Unhappy Ending: Wisconsin Dem Tied to Massage Parlor Won't Run for Reelection

August 10, 2021

Rep. Ron Kind (D., Wis.), who has come under fire for renting property to a massage parlor linked to prostitution and human trafficking, announced Tuesday he will not run for reelection.

Kind, who was first elected to represent his Wisconsin district in 1996, has faced mounting scrutiny over the massage parlor since details on the business were first revealed earlier this year. The business, which advertised its services on the "Yelp for sex spas," is operated by a Chinese woman whom law enforcement investigated for prostitution and human trafficking.

Kind’s retirement is a major blow to House Democrats as they seek to maintain their narrow majority. Kind narrowly held the seat last cycle, defeating Republican Derrick Van Orden by less than 3 percentage points. Van Orden, a retired Navy SEAL, is running for the seat again this cycle.

Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D., N.Y.), the chair of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, warned last week that Democrats would lose their House majority if the midterms were held now.

Kind is the eighth member of the Democratic caucus to announce that they will not run for reelection in 2022. His decision was first reported by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.