History of Donations before Contracts in Madison

By: Mary Rinzel
By: Mary Rinzel

The head of a government watchdog group says there's a culture in Madison that encourages companies to donate to politicians to help them win government work.
He says it’s like rats that are trained to push a button to get a treat.
The Associated Press found employees of at least seven companies gave to Governor Doyle's campaign around the time their firms were awarded no-bid contracts.
But, the executive director of the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign says these donations began long before Doyle took office.
He says former Governor Thompson received $37,000 from executives of a construction company in 1999. Two weeks later, a committee Thompson chaired approved a $30 million, no-bid contract for the company to build a prison.

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