Hijacking Campaign 2018 - Information on Republican State Leadership Committee

Hijacking Campaign 2018 | Independent Expenditures | Issue Ads | Candidates | Offices | Campaign 2018

Posted: January 8, 2018
Updated: November 2, 2018

This is a Virginia-based group that supports Republican and conservative candidates for statewide office and the legislature in Wisconsin and around the country. Since January 2010, the group spent more than $2.7 million on independent expenditures and phony issue ads in Wisconsin elections.

Fall Election

In late October, the committee sponsored a 30-second television ad that claimed GOP Lt. Gov. Rebecca Kleefisch helped the Walker administration approve measures that lowered health insurance premiums.

In mid-October, the committee sponsored a 30-second ad that claimed Democratic Sen. Caleb Frostman, of Sturgeon Bay, supports a single-payer health care system that would cost taxpayers billions of dollars.  Frostman faces Republican Rep. Andre Jacque, of De Pere, to keep his 1st Senate District seat. At the end of October it sent mailers claiming that Frostman favored tax increases, expecially at the gas pump.

In early October, the group sponsored two 30-second radio ads - here and here - that claimed Democrat Lee Snodgrass, of Appleton, would raise taxes and the cost of health care if elected.  Snodgrass is challenging GOP Sen. Roger Roth, of Appleton, for his 19th Senate District seat.

In September, the committee sponsored radio and online ads - here and here - accusing Democratic Sen. Janet Bewley, of Mason, of being too liberal for her constituents on immigration, gun, and tax policies.  Bewley faces a challenge from Republican James Bolen, of Cable, to keep her 25th Senate District seat. In late October, the group followed up with a 30-second television ad that attacked Bewley on tax policy and immigration.

The group also sponsored radio ads and mailings to help Republican candidates in three other state Senate races in the 5th, 17th, and 23rd districts.

Special Election

Less than two weeks before a special election to fill the vacant 10th Senate District seat, the group sponsored a 60-second radio ad that accused Patty Schachtner, the Democratic candidate in the race, of wasteful spending and supporting higher taxes as St. Croix County medical examiner and a Somerset School Board member.

The group also sponsored a mailing that accused Schachtner of not paying her bills.

Schachtner faces Republican Rep. Adam Jarchow, of Balsam Lake, in the January 16 special election to fill the seat, which was vacated when longtime GOP Sen. Sheila Harsdorf, of River Falls, became Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s agriculture secretary.

Last active election: 2016