December 14, 2018
Republican Gov. Scott Walker received more than $5,000 in campaign contributions from Kimberly-Clark employees over the last eight years. Walker just announced a gift of $28 million in taxpayer dollars to Kimberly-Clark, which planned to close plants in the Fox Valley unless it received state aid.
Kimberly-Clark executives and other employees contributed $14,645 to legislative and statewide candidates between January 2010 and December 2017, including $5,340 to Walker. Nearly $2 of every $3 in campaign contributions from Kimberly-Clark employees went to Republicans – about $9,200 versus about $5,450 – to Democrats.
No current Republican or Democratic state senators have received contributions from Kimberly-Clark executives. The only current Assembly recipients of Kimberly-Clark employee contributions are GOP Rep. Mike Rohrkaste, of Neenah, $1,700, and the Assembly Democratic Campaign Committee, which has gotten $200.
The largest contributions from Kimberly-Clark employees to Walker were from:
Ruth Thompson, of Neenah, a marketing consultant, and her husband, Scott, $1,200
Michael Kapp, of New Berlin, a sales manager, $1,050
Paul Christoffel, of Appleton, a chemical engineer, $650
In addition, a Kimberly-Clark lobbyist, R.J. Pirlot, and his wife contributed $4,250 to Republican legislators last August. The contributions included $500 to Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald, of Juneau, and $250 each to Senate President Roger Roth, of Appleton, and Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, of Rochester.
Walker’s deal would give the company up to $28 million over five years to keep 388 jobs at its Cold Spring facility in the Fox Valley and also require Kimberly-Clark to invest at least $200 million in the facility.