Citizens for a Strong America
Posted: March 20, 2011
Updated: May 16, 2017
Estimated Spending: $985,000
This is a conservative, phony issue ad group with a Beaver Dam, Wisconsin address that claims it’s made up of citizens, businesses and nonprofit groups. The group advocates for lower taxes, increased public safety and parental control over a child’s medical, psychological and educational needs, according to its website. At the time of the election the group’s website, citizensforamerica.net,* was registered to a John Connors whose Milwaukee address was in the same building as Americans for Prosperity, a phony issue ad group that’s been involved in past Wisconsin elections. Connors is also a former national director of Students for Prosperity, an arm of Americans for Prosperity.
Citizens for a Strong America sponsored two television ads supporting incumbent Justice David Prosser in his April 5 reelection bid against challenger JoAnne Kloppenburg, a veteran assistant attorney general. One ad criticized Kloppenburg for suing businesses and farmers on behalf of the state.
The second ad featured a statement by Troy Merryfield, who publicly claimed in 2008 that Prosser "dropped the ball" in the late 1970s when he did not prosecute a Green Bay area priest that Merryfield and his brother accused of sexually abusing them. Prosser was Outagamie County district attorney at the time and the priest went on to abuse other children before he was sent jail in 2004. But in the group's ad, Merryfield defended how Prosser handled the case and says "now we're being victimized again" because Kloppenburg did not condemn the ad and tell its sponsor, the Greater Wisconsin Committee, to pull it.
*An ICANN WHOIS search conducted on May 16, 2017 shows that the organization's 2011 web address is now registered to what appears to be a Japanese web domain registration company.