WisDems: Illinois billionaire Dick Uihlein drops $200K more for Nicholson

Contact: Brad Bainum, bradb@wisdems.org

As Paul Ryan endorses Leah Vukmir, Uihlein goes even bigger for his “spawn[ed]” and “nurtur[ed]” candidate

MADISON — Restoration PAC — bankrolled by nearly $5 million from Illinois billionaire Dick Uihlein and his groups this cycle — is launching a new $200,000 digital buy to promote Kevin Nicholson over his Paul Ryan and Republican Party of Wisconsin-endorsed opponent Leah Vukmir, according to Politico’s Morning Score.

The New York Times has described Uihlein’s prolific support for Nicholson’s candidacy — which includes more than $20 million that Uihlein has dumped into 11 groups backing Nicholson since 2017 — as a test “of whether big money…can spawn, nurture and deliver a winning candidate.”

And of late, Wisconsin’s GOP U.S. Senate primary has devolved into a proxy war between the Illinois billionaire and the Republican Party of Wisconsin — a “test” of the state party’s influence versus millions in spending from an out-of-state billionaire and the arsenal of outside groups that he bankrolls.

“While Wisconsin Republicans beg for party unity and try to push their endorsed candidate Leah Vukmir toward a primary victory with big endorsements from Paul Ryan and others, it’s clear that out-of-state billionaire Dick Uihlein has another outcome in mind,” said Brad Bainum, DPW spokesperson for the 2018 Senate race. “Uihlein remains as committed as ever to stoking intra-GOP divisions and buying a U.S. Senate seat for Kevin Nicholson, his spawned candidate of choice.”

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