Wealthy Walker Donors Quick to Take Advantage of New Federal Contribution Limits

February 27, 2015

Three wealthy donors who have given Republican Gov. Scott Walker and the state Republican Party $141,000 in the last three years are among the first contributors to take advantage of new federal contribution limits to national party committees.

A campaign finance report filed by the Republican National Committee (RNC) showed the three donors contributed a total of $486,000 in January to the committee, which raises and spends millions of dollars to help elect Republican congressional and presidential candidates.

The new federal contribution limits approved in December by Congress and President Obama allow individuals to make donations to multiple RNC accounts, to a maximum of $324,000, which is five times higher than the old limit. The donors are:

Stephen J. Ziegler, of Oconomowoc, who contributed $97,200 to the RNC in January. Ziegler is chief executive officer of Inpro Corp., which manufactures railings, panels and other products to protect interior building walls. Between 2012 and early 2015, Ziegler, and his wife, Heather, gave $61,000 to Walker’s campaign and $55,000 to the state Republican Party;

Michael Vlock, of Branford, Conn., who contributed $64,800 to the RNC in January. Vlock is a director of LaunchCapital LLC, which is an investment company. Vlock contributed a total of $25,000 to Walker’s campaign in 2012 and 2013.

Kenneth Griffin, of Chicago, a billionaire who once complained the wealthy didn’t have enough influence on politics, contributed $324,000 to the RNC in January. Griffin, who runs hedge fund Citadel LLC, contributed $10,000 to Walker’s campaign in 2014.