February 14, 2010

Updated: Follow the money from Racine...

UPDATED: We found a more complete source tonight (thanks, Journal Sentinel for this great contribution database! Yours is so much better than the state's!), and went through it, looking for all the "Racine" addresses listed among donors to the three gubernatorial candidates. Here's what we found:

Scott Walker has received 250 contributions from Racine, totalling $44,344 (an average of $177). There were 11 worth $1,000 or more; the largest was $7,000 from Craig Leipold. As our story below notes, Walker aggregated thousands of contributions under $25, not listing them individually. Walker also received 17 contributions from Caledonia, worth a total of $1,730.

Tom Barrett received 11 contributions from Racine, totalling $6,615, an average of $601. The largest was $2,500 from Jeff Neubauer, president of Kranz, Inc. He also received one contribution from Mt. Pleasant: Kim Plache gave $50.

Mark Neumann received 35 contributions from Racine, totalling $1,158, an average donation of $33. The largest was $300 from Tashe Bozinovski, chief executive of Landmark Title.

Original post:

Wisconsin's gubernatorial candidates have filed their first financial reports -- the three major contenders have raised a total of $3.9 million so far -- and we had one question: Which Racinians are supporting which candidates; who's seeking a place in the smoke-filled room where all the important decisions will be made for the next four years?

The Journal Sentinel has a fascinating overview of the financial aspect of Wisconsin's gubernatorial race -- which is barely under way, except for that key aspect: fund-raising. But it doesn't go deep enough... so we drilled through the reports filed with the Wisconsin Government Accountability Board to see where our neighbors' money is going.

So far, the three major candidates -- Republicans Scott Walker and Mark Neumann, and Democrat Tom Barrett -- have filed hundreds of pages of contribution listings. And the process has just begun; without the presence of incumbent Jim Doyle, the race is expected to cost upwards of $50 million.

Here's what we found about Racine's contributions so far:

Former congressman Mark Neumann -- he held what is now Paul Ryan's seat for four years in the 1990s -- reported the largest number of contributions from Racine -- 35 of them -- in an 84-page filing listing a total $1,322,461 in donations. Neumann, whose biggest contributor is himself with more than $1 million, listed just two Racine contributions over $100: Matt Matrise of Renewable Energy, gave $100, and Tashe Bozinovski of Landmark Title gave $300.

One-third of Neumann's contributions from here were $10 or under, including a few at $3 and $5. Racine's donations to his campaign averaged $33 and totalled $1,158.

Milwaukee County Executive Scott Walker had small contributions as well -- but lumped 4,642 donations of $20 together as one, which did not disguise the fact that he had far more individual contributors than the other candidates. Walker reports close to $3 million raised, but the only report we could find online showed his most recent contributions: 100 pages of them, totalling $413,215, including $20,200 from PACs.

Of those, 20 came from Racine. The largest were: $3,000 from Lorraine Greenberg from Promotions Unlimited, $2,000 from Sandra Young, $2,500 from Frederick Young, $1,000 from Willard Walker, $500 each from Bonnie Obernberger of Creative Insurance Plan and Michael Derdzinski of Johnson Insurance. Two sizable contributions came from other candidates' campaign war chests: "Friends and Neighbors of Robin Vos" contributed $500. So did "Knuteson for Senate 2002" -- Atty. John Knuteson's failed 21st District campaign from eight years ago has doled out $7,696 to a variety of Republican candidates over the past 18 months.

The Rev. Jeffrey Thielen gave $200 in 2008, before the priest from St. Mary's Church in Burlington resigned amid allegations of financial improprieties.

In all, Walker's listed contributions from Racine totalled $11,480 and averaged $574.

UPDATE ON WALKER: The more up-t0-date Walker filing includes: $9,100 in three donations from Craig Leipold, chairman of the Minnesota Wild (and husband of Helen Johnson Leipold of SCJ); $5,000 from the "Friends and Neighbors of Robin Vos" given on Dec. 31, 2009, and $1,000 from Vos himself on the same date; $2,000 from Nancy Sobczak; $1,000 from David Eberle, president of Norco; and $1,000 from Ray Antonneau, CEO of David Security Insurance Agency; "Friends of William McReynolds" gave $200.

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett filed 116 pages of contribution reports, listing $792,634 in donations, which included $153,408 from PACs. Barrett's largest contributors from here were: Jeff Neubauer of Kranz Inc., $2,500; Steven Botzau, an attorney with Habush, Habush and Rotier, $2,000; Robert Henzl, an attorney with Hostak, Henzl and Bichler; Jamie Wall, $1,000; Jerold Franke of Wispark, $400. Rep. Cory Mason ponied up $100.

Barrett's 12 Racine contributions from Racine totalled $7,215 and averaged $604.

Lt. Gov. Barbara Lawton, who quit the gubernatorial race last Oct. 26, filed a 36-page contributions report, with donations totalling $107,461 for the year. She had pulled in just one Racine contribution: $2,000 from Bruce Bernberg on Oct. 5. (Timing is everything, Bruce!)


  1. "The Rev. Jeffrey Thielen gave $200 in 2008, before the priest from St. Mary's Church in Burlington resigned amid allegations of financial improprieties."

    Was the part about alleged "financial improprieties" really necessary to point out??

    If so, what about all the other "alleged" crooked dealings with some of these other names?

    NEVER saw you guys bring up Eickorst's seedy past until a blogger pointed it out(perhaps because you guys love Dickert???)

    Shows your true colors...LOL.

    Just had to call you two out.

  2. Pete,

    You have your "smoked filled rooms" confused by all the pot smoke filled rooms you have been in while coveting the left. The most famous deals being made in a smoked filled room would be in the Oval Office. Your commander and thief still smokes in there when he is buying votes. What exactly he is smoking has come into question lately because of the decisions he has been making.

  3. Thanks for the work and posting this Pete!

    As for HunterJohn

    I guess when you go to the John you get what you expect - a bunch of crap.

  4. If a guy I'll call "Crack Leap-And-Grab-Hold" is for Walker, I know who won't be getting any votes in my neighborhood. Years ago, "Crack" owned and operated a sweatshop named "Ain't Fair," where he exploited toilers galore. The people remember his crimes as well as the lies which his spouse (Yellin') told to conceal his ties to and with a pricey eatery she ran downtown. Yellin' fibbed because she was afraid that the Cesar Chavez Foundation would picket her establishment and, possibly, boycott Waxtrash products.

  5. "Yellin' Waxtrash Leap-And-Grab-Hold"/ should have been a boy 'cuz she lies so bold. If "Crack" and "Yellin'" want Walker, we don't need him.

  6. Thanks for the info. on the Rev. "Jack-Free Thievin'" and his sewer-pot for Walker. Seriously, since the crooked "pass-turd" and the "Leap-And-Grab-Holds" want Walker, we know what we'll be doing on election day.

  7. The time has come to end kleptoplutocratic misgovernment, aka corpocracy. One way or another--preferably through legal, non-violent methods only--the corporate oligarchy must be dethroned and rendered harmless. Here in Racine, that means an end to the Waxclan's calamitous reign of error.

  8. The Wicked Good Militia and the Waxbashers recommend voting for anyone other than Waxtrash-supported candidates.