Hijacking Campaign 2012

Citizens for a Strong America

Posted: October 11, 2012
Updated: May 18, 2017

Estimated Spending: $35,000

This conservative, phony issue ad group was created in 2011 to support Wisconsin Supreme Court Justice David Prosser in his spring reelection campaign and spent an estimated $2.7 million on phony issue ads in the 2011 Supreme Court and recall elections.  Citizens for a Strong America lists only a Columbus, Wisconsin post office box as its address and claims to be made up of citizens, businesses and nonprofit groups that support lower taxes, increased public safety and more parental control over a child’s well-being. 

The group's website* was registered to a John Connors whose Milwaukee address is in the same building as Americans for Prosperity, a phony issue ad group heavily involved in Wisconsin and federal elections. Connors is also a former national director of Students for Prosperity, an arm of Americans for Prosperity.  The organization lists Valerie Johnson as its treasurer.  Johnson is the wife of longtime GOP political operative R.J. Johnson who heads another outside electioneering group called Club for Growth Wisconsin.

Citizens for a Strong America sponsored radio ads against two Assembly Democratic candidates about a month before the fall 2012 elections. One ad accused candidate Maureen May-Grimm of supporting tax increases as a Mineral Point School Board member when people could least afford to pay higher taxes.  May-Grimm ran against 51th Assembly District incumbent Howard Marklein.  The group also sponsored an ad criticizing Assemby 49th District candidate Carol Beals who challenged incumbent Republican Travis Tranel.

The group also sponsored mailings attacking incumbent Democratic Senator Dave Hansen of Green Bay who faces Republican challenger John Macco for his 30th Senate District seat and Republican incumbent Representative Scott Krug's challenger, Democrat Justin Pluess in the 72nd Assembly District.

*A May 18, 2017 attempt to reach this site's URL, http://citizensforamerica.net/, retrieves a "403, Forbidden Error." An ICANN WHOIS search shows that the site is registered to a Japanese company, onamae.org.

Last active election: Recall 2011