Spotlight on Wisconsin

Money & Politics: Unions’ lobbying expenses skyrocket

Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism

Much attention is paid, and rightly so, to the enormous amounts of cash poured into political campaigns as contributions to candidates and through third-party groups that, in the estimation of state Senate President Mike Ellis, R-Neenah, have "hijacked” campaigns and made candidates “almost irrelevant."

Money & Politics: Campaign cash comes out as commercials

As anyone with a television has probably figured out by now, Wisconsin’s recall elections are in full swing. The millions of dollars flowing into these contests, much from special interest groups, are being transformed into 30- and 60-second commercials, most of them negative.

Negative messages have been a feature of political campaigns since Oorg challenged Grok: “His fault fire die.” But the ads in the current recall elections are extraordinary for several reasons.

Money & Politics: Out-of-state money flows quietly in

Lily Eskelsen, a union leader who lives and works in Washington, D.C., cares deeply about the recall election challenge being waged in Wisconsin by Democrat Shelly Moore.

You might even say she’s invested in it.

Money & Politics: Candidate spending hits new highs in recalls

It’s still several weeks before the general elections, with big bucks yet to flow, but already Wisconsin’s recall-o-rama is awash in campaign cash — and at least one record will surely fall.

Money & Politics: Disclosure statements part of public’s right to know

Created by the Wisconsin Center for Investigative Journalism

Joni Mitchell, reflecting on the loss of trees, bees and her old man, famously mused:

“Don’t it always seem to go
That you don’t know what you’ve got
’Til it’s gone.”

Or almost gone.