Outside Groups Spend More on GOP Candidates
$300,000 spent on August primary’s legislative candidates, with $97,031 from Koch-connected AFP.
Outside electioneering groups spent nearly $300,000 on outside electioneering activities in legislative primary contests, according to a preliminary review by the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign.
The money was spent in 16 legislative races leading up to the Aug. 11 primary with open seats where no incumbent is running for reelection and targeted seats where the incumbent is seen as vulnerable.
Three groups that backed Republicans have doled out about $167,750 and five groups that backed Democratic candidates have spent about $105,325.
One group, Voters First Wisconsin Committee, that claims to support Republican and Democratic “unity” candidates dropped about $8,735 in a Republican primary.
The top-spending groups were:
Americans for Prosperity, $97,031
Make Liberty Win, $70,712
Citizen Action of Wisconsin, $49,361
Click on the name of the group for more details about its spending and the races it was involved in. For more information about the other groups already involved in the legislative races, visit the Hijacking Campaign 2020 feature.
The primary races that drew the most spending by the groups were:
$86,300 in the 10th Senate District by Americans for Prosperity and Make Liberty Win. The two GOP groups backed Republican Rep. Rob Stafsholt, of New Richmond, who won the primary. Stafsholt will face freshman Democratic Sen. Patty Schachtner, of Somerset, who was the surprise winner of this northwestern Wisconsin seat in a special election two years ago;
$47,369 in the Assembly 55th District by Americans for Prosperity and Make Liberty Win. The groups backed Republican Rachael Cabral-Guevara, who won the three-way primary, for this open seat in southwestern Wisconsin;
$26,381 in the Assembly 96th District by Citizen Action of Wisconsin. The group backed Democrat Josefine Jaynes, of Readstown, who won the primary. She will face incumbent Republican Rep. Loren Oldenburg, of Viroqua, in November for this western Wisconsin seat.
The general election is Nov. 3. All 99 Assembly seats and 16 state Senate seats are on the ballot. Republicans currently control the Assembly 63-34 and the Senate 18-13 with two vacancies in each house.