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Meanwhile, a Democratic union worker known as 'IronStache' on Twitter makes a bid for Paul Ryan's Wisconsin seat

 (Amber Arnold / Associated Press)
(Amber Arnold / Associated Press)

On a day when political attention was focused on a House race in suburban Atlanta, another bit of congressional election intrigue managed to turn heads in Washington.

A mustachioed ironworker, Randy Bryce, found a ready audience for an emotional bio-video introducing the Democrat as a blue-collar challenger to House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, a Wisconsin Republican, in 2018.

Some who viewed the politically powerful video, in which Bryce shares heart-tugging scenes with his ailing mother and young son, wondered whether the hard-hat-wearing candidate was for real. Could this be a parody?

But the long-shot contender is very real. He is known as @IronStache among his 48,000 Twitter followers, and describes himself as a lifelong Wisconsin resident and activist. Bryce has previously run for state office.

"I decided to run for office because not everyone has a seat at the table, and it's time to make a bigger table," he says in the video.

"Let's trade places," he goes on. "Paul Ryan, you can come work the iron and I'll go to D.C."

Ryan has represented his southeastern Wisconsin district for 20 years and easily beat back both a primary and general election challenger in 2016. He is favored for reelection in 2018.

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