WI Gov Supports Status Quo over Tightening, Loosening Campaign Finance Laws

Wisconsin News (1/7): “Assembly Speaker Robin Vos, R-Rochester, has called for changing state law to let businesses donate directly to political parties. Currently in Wisconsin, corporations cannot donate to candidates or parties, but some fund outside groups engaged in election-related advocacy. Vos, speaking to WisconsinEye, pitched direct giving as preferable because ‘it’s transparent, it has to be disclosed to the public, it’s all available online.’
[Governor Scott] Walker, however, is cool to this idea.

“’I have no interest in going down the path of other states” that allow corporate contributions, he said, citing Illinois as an example. ‘I don’t see a direct benefit in that.’

“The Legislature is also likely to make a fresh effort to raise contribution limits for candidates and parties. But Walker said ‘we were able to do just fine’ in the last election, in which individuals could give no more than $10,000 to his campaign.”

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MA Editorial Joins Gov’s Call for Capping Contributions by Campaign, Calls for Further Limits on Money

Enterprise News: “There’s a reason Massachusetts campaigns begin 14 months before Election Day. Unlike federal laws, which limit donations by election cycle, state law goes by the calendar year. That encourages campaigns to get donors to give the maximum amount the year before the election, then go after them again the next year. It also means that, for incumbents especially, the pursuit of campaign contributions goes on year in and year out.

“Baker has proposed removing the incentive to squeeze campaign donors early and often. He has called for capping individual contributions at $1,000 for the primary campaign and $1,000 for the general election.”

Editorial also supports Baker’s proposal to change the primary calendar and calls for changing municipal election days to the general election.