Conservative Groups Outspend Liberals in Wisconsin Judicial Race

Apr 05 2011 Published by under Uncategorized

The Wisconsin Supreme Court race today has sadly misled conservatives atwitter about how much money evil liberals spent to “buy” the race. But guess what? As usual, conservatives outspent liberals 1.8 million to 1.2 million. How did conservatives come up with their sad numbers, showing the Koch brothers as underdogs? They only reported one source of their donations.

Wisconsin Politics reports:

A tally for the Brennan Center for Justice says five groups had spent more than $3 million on broadcast TV through Sunday in the Supreme Court race.

But the data doesn’t include cable buys, meaning the total is a higher.

Through Sunday, the Greater Wisconsin Committee was the biggest spender in the tally at $1.2 million.

The liberal group was followed by conservative organizations Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce ($758,790), Citizens for a Strong America ($671,600), Wisconsin Club for Growth ($415,860) and the State Tea Party Express ($5,100).

Prosser has made a big show of how public financing laws were meant to destroy him, when in fact, he needn’t worry about that since special interests groups backing him (including Koch brothers money) out spent his opponent. The state legislature passed Wisconsin’s public financing law in 2009 after public concerns about the low level attack ads being ran during campaigns.

Public finance laws are meant to even the playing field. If Prosser thinks he would be hurt by only relying on public financing, that suggests that he feels he needs big money to win the race. In an example of how Prosser benefited financially over his opponents, The Wisconsin Club for Growth spent 69 percent of all television advertising in the primary on Prosser, which is twice as much as the two challengers combined paid and the numbers show that WCG spent a lot more per ad, suggesting the ads were placed in higher dollar ad slots; i.e., in larger markets or at more popular time slots, thereby getting more viewers. For example, WCG spent $400 per ad while Kloppenburg spent $150 per ad.

Prosser and Kloppenburg each received $100,000 in public money for the primary campaign and $300,000 for the general election from the state’s new judicial public financing program. This is the program Prosser has suggested was designed to target him.

Interestingly, this is how the Wall Street Journal reported this in their opinion section:

“The race has become a de facto referendum on the power of public employee unions. Spending is expected to top $3.5 million, mostly from outside groups. The Tea Party Express has invested $200,000 in TV ads attacking JoAnne Kloppenburg, Justice Prosser’s opponent, as unqualified and a puppet of union bosses. The liberal Greater Wisconsin Committee has spent $1 million, some of which has gone for a controversial ad accusing Mr. Prosser of not prosecuting a pedophile priest when he was a district attorney more than 30 years ago. The ad also says that Mr. Prosser and a bishop sent the priest to another town “to avoid scandal” but that his assaults continued.”

I just thought you might like to understand why cheap labor conservatives feel so victimized. They think they are the underdogs being beaten by evil outside interests by union thugs who want to steal all of their money. WSJ’s John Fund doesn’t tell us his source for the numbers, so we can’t compare apples to apples here, but he obviously left out a lot of money. Fund left his readers with the impression that Prosser was outspent when in fact, it is the other way around according to the non-partisan Brennan Center for Justice.

Kinda explains conservatives’ anger, though. This is what happens when Rupert Murdoch buys a previously highly regarded paper and begins to feed the readers propaganda. Perhaps they are going to such extremes to defend Prosser because he has such issues with his temper that a previous Governor just stepped down from supporting him, citing Prosser’s temperament as the issue. Prosser, who called his Chief Justice a “bitch” he was going to “destroy” while debating a case is not exactly the image of impartiality anyone should want to see on the bench.

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