With all the talk of record spending in the Senatorial Recalls, Badger Democracy examined the most recent individual contribution amounts available on Wisconsin Democracy Campaign. The numbers are telling as to who is backing each candidate, and what a vote for each candidate stands for. Here are four of the six races for comparison (individual contributions are unavailable for candidates Moore and Nusbaum) – keep in mind, this is individual reported contributions for a specific candidate, not outside interest spending, allowing a view of individual support.
Alberta Darling has accumulated $1.673 million in individual contributions, more than any other candidate. Of her 8,541 contributions, 220 are over $1000 – 2.6%. That’s an average donation of almost $200. Darling’s top 10 donations amount to $87,000. Most are from Banks, Financial Interests, Large Construction, Large Healthcare interests, and School Choice supporters. In contrast, Sandy Pasch only has accumulated $111,189 in individual contributions. Of her 675 contributions, only 6 are over $1000 (all her own personal money) – less than 1%. An average donation of about $160, and her top 10 donations amount to $29,000. Pasch’s donors are from a wide spectrum of individual stated interests, and many contributed under $50.
Dan Kapanke comes in second place, with $908,314. Of his contributions, 215 of his 4228 exceed $1000 (including current/former state legislators Lazich, Panzer, Huelsmann) – a full 5%. Kapanke’s top 10 donations amount to $41,500, most from Construction moguls, Banks, Business Interests, and School Choice proponents. By contrast, Jen Shilling contributions show $99,321. Only 2 of her 672 donations exceed $1000 – less than 1%. Her top 10 donations amount to only $14,000 – again, a large contrast from the enormous corporate backing for Kapanke. Shilling’s average donation comes in under $150, while Kapanke’s exceeds $210.
Randy Hopper has collected $344,555. 107 of those 919 exceed $1000 – a full 11%. Hopper’s top 10, anchored by liquor distributors, banks, and other large corporate interests contributed $85,000. That’s a whopping $374 average contribution. Jessica King has raised $155,879 in contributions. 42 of her 773 exceed $1000, about 5%. King’s top 10 donations amount to only $10,000, while her lowest ten donations are all under $10 each. By far, the most diverse and individual contributions of any candidate.
Luther Olsen has raised $103,630 in individual contributions. 7 of his 664 exceed $1000 – about 1%. Olsen’s top 10 donations amount to $14,125, over 10% of his total from large, corporate and school choice proponents. While Fred Clark has outraised Olsen in individual contributions, the nature of those donations is in stark contrast. Of his $125,328, his top 10 amount to a mere $5500 – only 4% of his total. Only 1 of his contributions exceeds $1000 – his own personal contributions. Most are under $100 – a stark contrast to Olsen.
The bottom line to be taken from these numbers indicates the true nature of this recall movement. The people backing the above Democratic candidates are the grassroots, working people of Wisconsin who have sacrificed $10, or $15 because this is a cause that has deeply affected them and their neighbors. The GOP supporters are the Corporatics and Robber Barons trying to preserve their power and profit at all costs, and change the nature of the economy for the “new global economy.” That is why we struggle, that is why this revolution will succeed. Because in the end, we will all stand with our neighbors and Wisconsinites who sacrificed to stop Scott Walker, Koch Industries, ALEC (and the rest) from the Corporate Coup d’Etat.
I stand with my friends, neighbors, and the Wisconsin Idea – VOTE August 9 for Revolution.
Finally, a new poll released Wednesday shows reason for optimism – let’s take it to the finish line!