Republican candidate for governor Mark Neumann has been asked to return a campaign contribution, but has indicated that’s not likely to happen. Neumann has been touting numbers which he says show his GOP opponent, Milwaukee County Exec Scott Walker, proposed spending at a higher rate than Democratic Governor Jim Doyle over the past eight years.
Jim Klauser, a former cabinet Secretary under Governor Tommy Thompson, has asked Neumann to drop out of the governor’s race and return ten thousand dollars in campaign contributions, but in a conference call with reporters, Neumann said he’s standing by his assertions. “If they can document to me that Scott Walker’s spending increases did not in fact got at a faster rate than Jim Doyle’s, than I would be happy to refund the money to Jim Klauser,” said Neumann. “Fair enough?” Klauser reportedly told Neuman in an e-mail that Neumann’s criticisms of Walker are “contrived,” and that he is only helping the Democrats with his campaign tactics.
Charles Franklin, a political scientist at the UW Madison, said he does not recall a similar event, or any high profile politico changing support for a candidate, as Klauser has done. Neumann is contesting the Republican primary race against Walker, with the winner to face the Democratic candidate, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett, in November.