Hijacking Campaign 2016 - Information on Wisconsin Working Families Party Independent Expenditure Committee

Hijacking Campaign 2016

Wisconsin Working Families Party Independent Expenditure Committee

Posted: August 9, 2016
Updated: June 2, 2017

Fall: OathSpending

This committee was newly created in 2016 by the Working Families Party which describes itself as a coalition of labor and community groups that seeks to elect candidates it considers progressive to local and state offices in 10 states, including Wisconsin. Its state director is Milwaukee County Supervisor Marina Dimitrijevic, who was a Democratic candidate for the Assembly in 2014. The organization’s issues include support for a higher minimum wage, public schools, voting rights, efforts to combat climate change, health care reform, and paid family leave and sick days. The group appears to help the candidates that it supports through phone and door-to-door canvassing activities.

Earlier in 2016, the committee spent about $427,000 on Milwaukee aldermanic and county executive races held during the spring elections.

The group endorsed Democratic candidates in a half-dozen Milwaukee-area Assembly and Senate races before the Aug. 9 primary election.

In November, the committee filed reports showing it spent about $1,300 on brochures in two Assembly and two Senate races. The candidates supported by the group in the Aug. 9 legislative primaries included Mandela Barnes in the 4th Senate District; LaTonya Johnson in the 6th Senate District; David Crowley in the 17th Assembly District; and Darrol Gibson in the 11th Assembly District. Half of those candidates won their respective primaries.

This organization is registered with the Government Accountability Board/Wisconsin Ethics Commission as an independent expenditure committee following the January 2010 U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Citizens United v. FEC.