GOP guv candidate Rebecca Kleefisch today accused the “Madison snakes and weasels” of trying to stop her and hinted Michels was recruited by the “good ole boys’ club” to run because they could control him.
In a column, the former lieutenant governor doesn’t mention Michels by name. Still, she references a millionaire who “can pay them from the campaign now … and pay them in favors later.” She wrote lobbyists have been “gossiping around the Capitol” that she can’t be controlled.
Michels started a TV ad this week in which he proclaimed “the lobbyists are not going to like me at all.” He has vowed not to take contributions from lobbyists and is capping donations at $500 as he puts his own money into the campaign.
Michels adviser Chris Walker said the business exec can’t “comment about the gossip among the lobby corps in Madison because he’s not hanging around them or courting support from them or the organizations they work for.”
Kleefisch also took a dig at Michels’ pledge to turn Madison “upside down,” writing it’s “cute but not enough.” She again vowed to move state agencies out of the capital city and to “dismantle” Madison as she pledged to take on lobbyists.
Prior to launching her campaign for guv, Kleefisch worked as a jobs ambassador for Associated Builders and Contractors of Wisconsin Inc. The firm lobbies the state Capitol, though Kleefisch was not licensed to lobby on the group’s behalf.
Kleefisch’s husband, former GOP state Rep. Joel Kleefisch, is a registered lobbyist. According to the state Ethics Commission’s website, he’s currently representing nine clients. That includes the Wisconsin Game Preserve Association and a firm that lobbies on the regulation of vapor and tobacco products.
The Wisconsin Game Preserve Association last week endorsed Kleefisch.
A Kleefisch spokesman told WisPolitics.com that Joel Kleefisch would quit lobbying if his wife is elected guv.
Read the column here.