Wisconsin Democracy Campaign's press releases and special reports cover issues central to our mission, including campaign fundraising, political corruption and more.

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3M’s Money Trail

Smoke Stacks Belching Money

August 24, 2018

Here is the money trail for 3M, which the Department of Natural Resources is investigating again after air pollution control equipment at 3M’s Wausau factory failed in April and records show the company didn’t properly report emissions in 2016 and 2017.

FOIC Should Rescind ‘Openness’ Award to Governor

An open letter to the Wisconsin Freedom of Information Council

August 22, 2018

Dear Bill Lueders and the FOIC Board,

We urge you to rescind the “Openness” award you gave to Gov. Walker earlier this year.

Six Wealthy Donors Give State GOP $255K

Rich Main in Sports Car in Front of Wisconsin Sign

August 15, 2018

Six wealthy contributors, all but one of whom are from outside Wisconsin, have given the state Republican Party $255,000 during the past two weeks.

Outside Electioneering Groups Spent Most on Mahlon Mitchell

Firetruck Spraying Money

August 13, 2018

About a dozen outside electioneering groups have spent about $655,300 on legislative and statewide primary elections that will be held Tuesday. And nearly two-thirds of the spending was made by unions to support Democratic candidate for governor Mahlon Mitchell.

WMC Recognizes High-Capacity-Well Backer with “Environmental” Award

Award and Potato Field Under Irrigation

August 9, 2018

An industry group that helped spearhead a state law that loosened state oversight and regulation of controversial high-capacity wells has received an environmental award from Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce (WMC).

Half of the Largest Contributors to AG Candidates Were Outside Wisconsin

Scales of Justice with Luggage

August 8, 2018

About half of the largest individual contributions to the major party attorney general candidates in July were from lawyers and others outside of Wisconsin, newly filed campaign finance reports show.

WEDC Gives $60M to Company Run by Walker Donors

Cardboard Box Full of Cash

August 7, 2018

Top executives of a papermaker that was recently awarded $60 million in state welfare for a construction project have contributed more than $17,000 to Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s campaigns.

WDC Letter on 2020 Census Citizenship Question

Man taking survey

Wisconsin Democracy Campaign opposes the inclusion of a citizenship question on the 2020 census.

Major State Parties Raising Money Hand Over Fist

Fistful of dollars

August 3, 2018

The state Democratic and Republican parties raised nearly $4.9 million combined during the first six months of 2018, with the GOP sharply outraising Democrats. The Republican Party of Wisconsin also had five times as much money on hand as its Democratic counterpart.

Republicans Outraising Dems with Record-Breaking Hauls by Legislative Leaders

Cash of various denominations

August 2, 2018

The four legislative campaign committees in Wisconsin are hauling in money at a record clip, with the two Republican ones far outdistancing their Democratic counterparts, according to a review by the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign.

Wisconsin Contributors Gave Record $3.6M in First Half of 2018 to Unregulated Groups

Wisconsin Money

July 30, 2018

Nearly four dozen special interest groups that raise and spend unlimited amounts of money to hijack state and federal elections received a record $3.6 million from Wisconsin contributors during the first half of 2018, a Wisconsin Democracy Campaign review found.

Latest Foxconn Bid Winners Contributed $68K to Walker Campaign

Bid Button with $100 Bills

July 25, 2018

Owners and employees from a third of the three dozen companies that were awarded contracts by Foxconn on Tuesday have contributed about $68,000 to Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s campaigns.

Betsy DeVos Visits Wisconsin Schools after Siphoning $$$ from Them

Betsy DeVos

by Matthew Rothschild, Executive Director

July 24, 2018

Betsy DeVos, Donald Trump’s Secretary of Education, has some gall! She’s in Wisconsin today to visit public schools in Adams-Friendship after the organization she founded has spent millions of dollars devastating our public schools.

WMC Gives $1M+ to Outside Electioneering Group to Back Walker

WMC Headquarters

July 24, 2018

An outside electioneering group that helps elect Republican governors in Wisconsin and throughout the country received nearly $1.9 million from Wisconsin contributors during the first six months of 2018.

2018 Wisconsin Supreme Court Race Topped $5.5M

Justice Behind a Pile of Cash

July 20, 2018

Candidates in last spring’s Wisconsin Supreme Court race and the outside electioneering groups that praised or smeared them spent more than $5.5 million, a Wisconsin Democracy Campaign review found.

Russian Woman Highlights Walker’s NRA Ties

Pistol with cash

July 17, 2018

Republican Gov. Scott Walker met twice in 2015 with a Russian agent posing as a gun rights activist. The woman, Maria Butina, was arrested Sunday as being part of a plot by Russia to interfere with the 2016 presidential election.

AG Candidates Raise Nearly $1.3M in First Half of 2018

Cash Raining Down on Lady Justice

July 19, 2018

Incumbent GOP Attorney General Brad Schimel and his Democratic challenger, Joshua Kaul, raised a total of nearly $1.3 million in the first half of 2018.

Walker Raises Twice as Much as All of the Democratic Candidates

Scale Comparing Walker and Democratic Fundraising

July 17, 2018

Republican Gov. Scott Walker raised more than double of all of the eight remaining Democratic candidates for governor combined during the first six months of 2018.

Walker Received “Pay-to-Play” Contribution from Exec of Investment Company

Greased Palms

July 16, 2018

Republican Gov. Scott Walker accepted a $2,700 federal campaign contribution from the founder of a Texas investment firm that recently agreed to pay $500,000 to settle pay-to-play claims by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Convicted Fraudster and WEDC Borrower Was Generous Republican Donor

Silhouette of man with briefcase

July 12, 2018

Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s job creation agency has written off a $1.1 million state loan to a De Pere businessman accused of defrauding the agency. The individual, Ron Van Den Heuvel, was once a generous contributor to GOP legislative and statewide candidates.

Conservative Justices Accepted $37K From Groups in Malpractice Case

Gavel with Drugs

July 3, 2018

The Wisconsin Supreme Court’s conservative majority accepted more than $37,000 in campaign contributions from health care, insurance and business groups they sided with in a recent medical malpractice case.

Influence Peddler of the Month for July 2018 - National Democratic Redistricting Committee

National Democratic Redistricting Committee Logo

July 2, 2018

This is a new group that advocates redistricting reform and supports Democratic candidates for state and federal offices throughout the country. In its first six months of outside spending on Wisconsin legislative and statewide elections, three of the four candidates backed by the committee won their races.

Trump Fundraiser Hosted by Walker Big Donor

Trump on $100 Bill

June 27, 2018

GOP President Donald Trump was scheduled to headline a Republican Party fundraiser on Thursday before joining Gov. Scott Walker to break ground for Foxconn’s proposed manufacturing plant in Racine County.

Foxconn Bid Winners Are Generous Contributors to Walker

Walker signing Foxconn deal

June 27, 2018

Owners and employees from six of eight companies chosen by Foxconn to construct a $14 million building at its future Racine County manufacturing plant contributed nearly $180,000 to Republican Gov. Scott Walker’s campaigns.