Senate to vote on extending lobbying donations

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- Lobbyists would be able to start giving money to candidate for office six weeks earlier under a bill before the state Senate.

The Republican-sponsored bill up for a vote Tuesday would allow lobbyists to start giving donations to candidates for office starting on April 15 in election years. Under current law they can't make any donations until June 1.

Supporters say the change is needed because partisan primaries have been moved up from September to August. But opponents are concerned about increasing the role of money in politics as lobbyists could give donations to state lawmakers before the legislative session is over.

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