Wisconsin Governor Candidates Draw Celebrity Contributions

February 19, 2015

The unprecedented 2011 and 2012 recall elections and Republican Governor Scott Walker’s possible 2016 presidential run have put Wisconsin under a national spotlight that’s drawn the attention of out-of-state donors and millions of dollars in contributions from them.

Among those donors are numerous well-known music, stage and film celebrities who have contributed to Walker and his opponents, Democrats Mary Burke and Tom Barrett, during the 2014 general election and 2012 recall election for governor.

Here’s a short list of some of these celebrity contributors and the Wisconsin candidates they backed:

Don Henley, Dallas, Tex., a singer, songwriter and founding member of the Eagles, contributed $6,000 to Burke in 2014.

Scott Baio, Tarzana, Calif., an actor best known for his role as Chachi on the sitcom “Happy Days,” made two contributions totaling $1,500 to Walker in 2012 and 2014.

Mark Ruffalo, New York, N.Y., an actor and film director best known for his role as The Hulk in the 2012 movie “The Avengers,” made numerous contributions totaling $1,136 between 2012 and 2014 to legislative and statewide candidates, including $481 to Burke and $450 to Barrett. Ruffalo is a Wisconsin native, born in Kenosha.

Barbra Streisand, Malibu, Calif., a singer, songwriter, actress, and film producer and director, contributed $1,000 to Burke in 2014.

Alan Ruck, Los Angeles, Calif., a stage and screen actor best known for his role as Cameron in the 1986 movie “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” contributed $200 to Burke in 2014.

Holland Taylor, Los Angeles, Calif., a television and screen actress best known for her roles as Ruth Dunbar in “Bosom Buddies,” Judge Roberta Kittleson in “The Practice,” and Evelyn Harper in “Two and a Half Men,” contributed $200 to Burke in 2014.

Neil Simon, New York, N.Y., a playwright and screenwriter best known for such works as “Barefoot in the Park” and “The Odd Couple,” contributed a total of $150 to Walker in 2012 and 2013.