3 of 4 Republican primary candidates for Wisconsin governor face off in debate

NOW: 3 of 4 Republican primary candidates for Wisconsin governor face off in debate

GREEN BAY, Wis. (CBS 58) -- Three of the four Republican primary candidates for Wisconsin governor took part in a debate in Green Bay Monday night.

The only candidate not attending: Trump-endorsed construction magnate Tim Michels. His absence did not go unnoticed.

Michels chose to attend a campaign rally in Lomira as his opponents Rebecca Kleefisch, Kevin Nicholson and State Representative Tim Ramthun touted their own conservative credentials.

"You must have a nominee who can win in November and will take Republicans in Madison to task and make sure they're doing what we have to do to get our society back on track," said Nicholson. 

"I know how to put the pieces back together because I was there to assemble them in the first place," said Kleefisch. "We will do welfare reform and massive income tax reform."

"Conservatism is aligning with the constitution. It's about freedom. It's about allowing for personal opportunity and responsibility," said Ramthun. 

Recent polling shows former Lt. Gov. Kleefisch and Tim Michels as frontrunners. 

The primary election is Aug. 9.

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