Terry Kohler

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Terry Jodok Kohler was a member of the wealthy Kohler family that owns the eponymous plumbing and manufacturing giant. A billionaire Wisconsin businessman, philanthropist, and Republican party leader, Kohler was also an active donor to right-wing causes and candidates as well as a committed donor to environmental causes. Kohler was born May 14, 1934 in Sheboygan, Wisconsin to father Walter Kohler Jr., who served as the 33rd governor of Wisconsin from 1951 to 1957, declining to seek a 4th term.[1] Walter Kohler Sr., Terry's grandfather, also served a term as governor of Wisconsin from 1929 to 1931.[2] Terry Kohler himself ran unsuccessfully for the Senate in 1980 and governor of Wisconsin in 1982.[3]


Kohler Calls Homosexuality "Immoral, Abhorrent"

In an interview with the Milwaukee Sentinel shortly after his 1982 gubernatorial defeat to Democrat Tony Earl, Kohler is on record making intolerant remarks about homosexuality and calling a public figure a Communist. "[Earl] promised to appoint queers and he has," Kohler said. A reporter then suggested that appointing a homosexual person to public office doesn't bother too many people these days, to which Kohler responded, "Maybe in your social circle it doesn't... It's aberrant behavior. It remains immoral based on Christian ethics," he continued. "Those people are sick and you don't kick sick people... [but] I could not possibly have accepted that as a moral stance as governor... it's abhorrent... I could not have supported a Communist, either, Howard Fuller. Maybe Marxist is a better word. I still think he is a Marxist."[4]

Earl appointed a homosexual man, Ronald McCrea, to serve as his press secretary. Fuller, an African-American activist from Milwaukee, served as Earl's director of employee relations.

Mary Kohler Fired from Wisconsin Women's Council for "Utterly Racist Comments"

On June 15, 1988, then Republican Governor Tommy Thompson fired Mary Kohler, wife of Terry Kohler, as chairwoman of the Wisconsin Women's Council. The 15-member Women's Council was responsible for identifying barriers that prevent women from participating equally in society. The move came after controversial remarks written by Mary Kohler surfaced following a release of their "travelogue" detailing the couple's trip to South Africa.

After the comments came to light, the National Organization for Women accused Kohler of "utterly racist comments" and demanded that she be dismissed from her state post.[5]

In the travelogue, Mary Kohler remarked that giving blacks in apartheid South Africa the right to vote would "be a total disaster" because "most of them are still in the stone age." Kohler wrote, "Largely, they are living the way they did 1,000 years ago, and some of them like it that way."[6][7]

According to the Chicago Tribune, "Kohler said she agreed with her husband, a Sheboygan industrialist and a former Republican candidate for governor and U.S. Senate, that the South African government is being 'absolutely as even-handed and unrepressive as it can be' in its treatment of blacks. She also said she believes the United States is more racist than South Africa and that South African blacks seem very happy with their lot in life."[5] She is quoted as saying that apartheid was a "cultural response" to historical developments.[8] She continued to claim that the news media did not portray the situation accurately and therefore the South African government was justified in silencing the press.[5]

"I know what it's like to be a minority and eat dinner by myself because nobody wants to eat dinner with me," Kohler said, describing women's issue conferences.[9]

In response to being fired, Kohler said that Governor Thompson lacked the "intestinal fortitude" to stand up to pressure from "The blacks. The Republican legislators, the black ministers, the black state employees."[7]

Kohler-Backed Coalition for America's Families

Citizens for a Strong America, which operated out of a UPS mail drop box but spent $836,000 on ads in the 2011 Wisconsin Supreme Court race,[10] appeared to be the successor to an earlier dark money group named the Coalition for America's Families (CFAF), which was a Terry Kohler-funded project.[11]

The Coalition for America's Families was active in Wisconsin politics throughout the mid-2000s and developed a track record of sleazy and misleading ads. In 2006, the group ran inaccurate and homophobic ads claiming that former Democratic Governor Jim Doyle was raising hunting and fishing fees to fund health insurance for the partners of gay and lesbian public employees. Another ad compared Doyle to Alabama segregationist George Wallace for not supporting school vouchers. It ran other ads attacking Doyle's plan for a state version of the DREAM Act giving undocumented students in-state tuition at public universities (which Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker reversed upon taking office). The group also ran misleading ads attacking Supreme Court Justice Louis Butler, and in 2008, a judge ordered some of the group's ads be taken off the air because they were so misleading (although that ruling was later overturned).

The Coalition for America's Families was run by R.J. Johnson, the former Executive Director of the Wisconsin Republican Party and Political Director of the Republican Party of Florida. According to IRS 990 tax filings, the group's treasurer was Johnson's wife Valerie.[12]

CFAF Bankrolled a Constitutional Amendment to Ban Gay Marriage in Wisconsin

In a television ad that began airing on June 6, 2006, the Coalition for America's Families falsely attacked "Governor Doyle’s proposal to raise taxes and fees to fund new spending programs like free health care for the partners of gay state employees," according to the group's press release.[13]

In the tax section of the group's website, the charge is repeated: "As for Governor Doyle’s budget staying true to basic Wisconsin values, you can decide for yourself. Do you want the government to spend millions of your tax dollars each year providing free government health care to the partners of gay state employees? Would you like to see your tax dollars pay for low interest loans and reduced tuition for illegal aliens?"[14]

At $391,580, the Coalition for America's Families was the largest contributor in support of Wisconsin Referendum 1, a referendum on an amendment to the Wisconsin Constitution to invalidate same sex marriages.[15] Reportedly making a six-figure donation, Kohler was the key benefactor to the group, according to Wisconsin Democracy Campaign.[16]

The referendum passed on November 7, 2006 with 59 percent of the vote.[17] It created Section 13 of Article XIII of the Wisconsin Constitution to define marriage in the state as between one man and one woman.[18] The ban was overturned by District Court Judge Barbara Crabb on June 6, 2014.[19]

"Issue Advocacy" Group Exposed as an Electoral Vehicle

In 2008, the Coalition for America's Families spent $480,000 in the Wisconsin Supreme Court race supporting challenger Michael Gableman against incumbent Louis Butler.[20] It is notable that the group allegedly formed to work on one issue, but quickly segued to another, exposing it as an electoral vehicle. Particularly notable was the television ad "Armstrong":

"Ralph Armstrong was a convicted rapist out on parole when convicted of raping beating and strangling a 19 year old coed to death. There was eyewitness testimony, fingerprints at the crime scene, and blood under Armstrong’s fingernails, but Louis Butler wrote the decision to overturn this rapist conviction. On cases taken up on the Supreme Court, Butler sides with criminals nearly 60 percent of the time. Tell Louis Butler victims, not criminals, deserve justice."

According to the Annenburg Public Policy Center, "Ralph Armstrong was convicted in 1981 for murder and rape the year before, and he was sentenced to life plus 16 years in prison. In 2005, Butler wrote the decision that overturned the conviction, based on previously unavailable DNA test results showing that hair on the victim's bathrobe belt didn't belong to the defendant, and ordered a new trial for Armstrong."

The ad fails to mention that the case was botched:

"The lineup from which (the main eyewitness) singled (Armstrong) out consisted of Armstrong, who called attention to himself by going limp to protest the process, and four police officers, at least two of whom wore what were obviously wigs. Even the witness said the lineup was fixed. She recanted her statements, then recanted her recantation. The ad also mentions "fingerprints" at the crime scene. But only one of them, which was found on a water bong, was Armstrong's. As for blood under Armstrong's fingernails, as the ad says, there were traces of human blood found under his thumbnails and the nails of two of his toes. But there wasn't enough of it for the crime lab to be able to identify who it was from or how old it was. Armstrong presented two credible, corroborated alternative explanations for how the blood got there, including the fact that he'd fallen and had a bloody knee.

"The forensics experts analyzing semen found on the victim's bathrobe could only conclude that it came from a person with Type A blood, which is the second-most common type in the U.S. Armstrong long ago had been turned down for a new trial after DNA tests eliminated him as the source of the semen. But in 2001, he filed a fresh motion based on the fact that new DNA testing also excluded him as the source of two hairs on Kamps' bathrobe belt. Those hairs had played a significant role in the case because the belt was found draped across Kamps' body."[21]

An analysis by Butler's campaign also shows that he voted to overturn criminal convictions only 23 percent of the time and voted to deny appeals on 70 percent of cases. "In addition to cases the Supreme Court actually heard arguments in and decided, the Court reviews hundreds of petitions from criminal appellants who are trying to get their conviction overturned and denies those appeals without a hearing. If those cases are included, as they should be (the Court does actually vote to accept or deny those appeals), then Justice Butler has voted to uphold criminal convictions in 97 percent of all cases the court has considered."[22]

The ad was pulled from the TV station WBAY before being updated, and WISC-TV in Madison refused to air it at all.[23][24]

At the end of 2009, after years of running inflammatory and often deceptive ads, Coalition for America's Families dissolved and transferred its assets to Citizens for a Strong America, which formed at the beginning of 2010.[25]

Citizens for a Strong America Acted as a Pass-Through for Wisconsin Club for Growth

Citizens for a Strong America made headlines in 2011 when it appeared out of nowhere and spent over $836,000 on the high-profile Wisconsin Supreme Court race between incumbent Justice David Prosser and challenger Joanne Kloppenburg. That election came in the midst of the Wisconsin recall elections and was treated as a referendum on Governor Walker's controversial anti-union legislation. The race stretched on for weeks after a prolonged statewide recount. The Wisconsin Democracy Campaign estimates that CSA spent $1,700,000 against Democrats during the 2011 and 2012 recall elections.[26]

Citizens for a Strong America is led by many of the same individuals as Coalition for America's Families. Valerie Johnson served as treasurer for both groups. Jessika Stauffacher has the same position on the board of Citizens for a Strong America as she had for its earlier iteration (although she has since changed her last name).[27]

In 2011, Wisconsin Club for Growth transferred $4,620,000 to Citizens for a Strong America. This was Citizens for a Strong America's only donation in 2011, and amounted to the group's entire operating budget, which means that Citizens for a Strong America acted like a pass-through for WiCFG. Both groups are organized as nonprofits under Section 501(c)(4) of the tax code, so they are not required to disclose their donors. But passing money from one group to the other helps further disguise the true source of the funds. Terry Kohler has been a longtime benefactor of Club for Growth, reportedly giving both to the PAC (which must disclose its contributions) and its nonprofit arm (which can keep its donors secret).

Wisconsin Club for Growth is led by veteran Republican strategist and longtime Scott Walker advisor R.J. Johnson. Johnson was previously Executive Director of the Republican Party of Wisconsin.

The treasurer for Citizens for a Strong America is Valerie Johnson, R.J. Johnson's wife. During the United Sportsmen controversy, R.J. Johnson acted as Terry Kohler's spokesperson (see below).[25]

United Sportsmen of Wisconsin, Electoral Vehicle for Club for Growth Wisconsin

In 2013, former Majority Leader of the Wisconsin State Assembly Scott Suder slipped a $500,000 renewable grant into the Wisconsin budget that was tailored for a newly formed group called the United Sportsmen of Wisconsin. The grant was designed to promote hunting, fishing, and trapping in the state. However, the group, which was the only applicant for the grant, had no record in outdoor training. The organization's record was that of a lobbying organization for a number of Republican policy priorities from mining to the Castle Doctrine. The foundation wing of the group, which was initially slated to receive the grant, had only incorporated months before it was awarded and weeks before the Wisconsin Senate recall elections.[28]

United Sportsmen Had Ties to Suder and Powerful Right-Wing Allies

Suder claims that he was unaware that his former chief of staff, Luke Hilgemann, was listed as an educator for United Sportsmen on the grant. Just days before the denial, Suder was copied in an email that made it very clear that Hilgemann was a board member for the foundation.[29] Hilgemann previously served as a lobbyist for the Koch brothers' Americans for Prosperity Wisconsin and later became the CEO of the national dark money group.[30] Additionally, Daren LaSorte, a board member of the United Sportsmen foundation and an NRA lobbyist, offered free fishing trips to Suder before being awarded the $500,000 grant.[29]

United Sportsmen had said in its application that it would use most of the money to pay its staff and consultants. The group had ties with Suder's allies, including his donors, lobbyists, and a former legislator who worked on gun legislation. The group also had a powerful Wisconsin ally, Terry Kohler. United Sportsmen board members and their families donated $2,500 to Suder the year before the grant proposal, according to numbers provided by the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign.[31]

$500,000 Grant Was Tailored Specifically For the Front Group

The grant, which was to be renewable every two years, was approved after just seven minutes of discussion by the Legislature's Joint Finance Committee.

A report by the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel revealed that the grant was tailored specifically for the group, with requirements eliminating many potential applicants. The DNR posted the grant on its website, but failed to issue a press release, leaving other eligible groups in the dark and unable to apply in time to meet the deadline. "We aren't criticizing the purpose of this at all," said George Meyer, executive director of the Wisconsin Wildlife Federation. "We think its purpose is important. But clearly it looks like it was put together for one group."[31]

United Sportsmen Was Funded Entirely by Wisconsin Club for Growth

United Sportsmen emerged in 2011 and was entirely funded by Wisconsin Club for Growth through its Citizens for a Strong America front group. Citizens for a Strong America reported in its 2011 tax filing that it gave $235,000 to United Sportsmen, the first year that the group was in existence.[25] It was one of the groups implicated in the Wisconsin John Doe investigation because it received money from Wisconsin Club for Growth in that time period.

United Sportsmen Collaborated With Americans For Prosperity to Mislead Voters

Brad Friedman reported in August 2011 that United Sportsmen and the Koch brothers' Americans for Prosperity mailed absentee ballot applications to Democratic voters with misleading information. The United Sportsmen mailers told voters they needed to return absentee ballots to the elections clerk by August 4 and the AFP mailers said the deadline was August 11, even though the actual deadline to mail in ballots was August 9. Examinations of nearly identical absentee ballot application mailers by United Sportsmen suggest that this was coordinated.[32][33]

United Sportsmen's website was purchased by John W. Connors, an Americans for Prosperity staffer and former Walker campaign volunteer. Connors had also purchased the domain name for Citizens for a Strong America and the street name for the domain name registry was the same as that of AFP. Unlike Citizens for a Strong America, United Sportsmen continued its political activities after the recall elections. It also maintained its ties to the Koch brothers' Americans for Prosperity.[28]

United Sportsmen Lobbied for Republican Policy Goals Unrelated to its Purported Mission

United Sportsmen of Wisconsin Inc. spent $60,387 lobbying lawmakers in favor of sporting legislation such as the creation of a wolf hunt as well as bills to ease the way for a controversial open-pit iron mine in northern Wisconsin and to better enable development in wetlands.[28]

The group also sponsored the Sportsmen Freedom Fest and Concert in Lake Delton with Americans for Prosperity and the National Rifle Association in October 2012, just ahead of the presidential election.

Kohler wrote to GOP legislators urging their support for "a Sporting Heritage Legacy Grant to the United Sportsmen"

On May 13, 2013 Kohler sent a letter to Wisconsin State Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald as well as three other Republican legislators on the budget committee, encouraging them to support a "Sporting Heritage Legacy Grant to the United Sportsmen of Wisconsin Foundation". In the letter, Kohler claims the grant would be used "to facilitate a new, one of a kind outdoor sporting recruitment and training initiative program in Wisconsin." Kohler continues to cite a 6.5 percent decline in the number of hunters in the last 10 years in urging for the grant to "maintain and grow our sporting heritage for years to come."[34]

R.J. Johnson, Scott Walker Operative, Serves as Kohler's Spokesperson

R.J. Johnson, a political operative for Scott Walker and paid consultant for Wisconsin Club for Growth, defended Kohler's letter in a statement:

"Through the DNR, the Legislature has made several named legacy grants to groups with an environmental focus. None of those groups are dedicated to our hunting and fishing traditions," Johnson said in the statement. "Terry Kohler believes resources derived from the sales of guns, ammunition, sporting goods, boats, motors and fishing equipment in Wisconsin should be dedicated to supporting programs that strengthen that heritage in our state."[35] Johnson said that Kohler had not discussed the grant with Walker, but would not comment on whether the mega-donor was behind Citizens for a Strong America.

Group Had Misrepresented its Tax Status on Multiple Occasions

In statements with a donor in 2011, United Sportsmen represented itself as a nonprofit, but in the summer of 2013, the group said in a statement that it was a for-profit entity. At the time of the grant, the group did not show up as having filed a Wisconsin income tax return. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that neither the United Sportsmen of Wisconsin nor its affiliate group, the United Sportsmen of Wisconsin Foundation Inc., had filed a tax return for 2011 or 2012, while they both had applied for the state grant.

"I'm struggling to think of another reason why they wouldn't be filing a tax return," said Susannah Tahk, a professor at the University of Wisconsin Law School who specializes in tax law. "It's possible they're somebody's subsidiary."[36]

United Sportsmen of Wisconsin Inc. said in a statement that it was "not a public charity" and instead is a for-profit corporation required to file its federal tax return using Form 1120.

Melissa Scholz, a Madison attorney specializing in nonprofit law, said that all didn't make sense. "There's clearly a disconnect between a group that's now calling itself a for-profit that got a grant from a (c)(4) when it organized," Scholz said.

"Mr. Pantzlaff did not speak directly with the foundation's counsel concerning the 501(c)(3) status, and was mistaken about the exemption process," said a statement issued by the group. "There was no intent to mislead anyone and ... the foundation apologizes for any confusion caused by this misunderstanding." The group had also stated it was a 501(c)(3) on its letterhead in a statement to the state. United Sportsmen applied for the federal nonprofit designation on March 1 but had not yet received it.

Paul Smith and Jason Stein of the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported that "despite the misrepresentation, the DNR initially notified United Sportsmen in a letter that it would receive the grant anyway, with $50,000 of it as an advance before receipts are filed."[37]

President of United Sportsmen was Previously Cited for Bear Hunting Without Proper License

Andy Pantzlaff, the president of United Sportsmen, was cited for hunting with the wrong kind of license in Langlade County on Sept. 11, 2005. He pled no contest and was convicted and assessed more than $300 in fines and forfeitures, according to records from the DNR and the county clerk of courts.

Pantzlaff said, “I do believe the Democrats held the Legislature and the Governor’s seat when that law was repealed due to safety issue so please don’t say it is a Republican thing. Most of our issues are bipartisan even in these extremely partisan days.” The law was changed in 2011. Republican Scott Walker was the sitting Governor and Republicans controlled both the Wisconsin State Senate and State Assembly. Randy Stark, the DNR’s chief warden, told the Journal Sentinel that Pantzlaff’s actions remain a violation. “Mr. Pantzlaff is correct the law has changed, but incorrect that his actions would not be a violation today,” Stark said.[38]

Had United Sportsmen received the grant, as president, Andy Pantzlaff would have been tasked with using that taxpayer money to teach beginning hunters the state's fish and game laws.

After Mounting Public Pressure Scott Walker Rescinds the Grant

Governor Walker cancelled the half million dollar grant on September 5, 2013, hours after the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel asked state officials about the 2005 case in which Pantzlaff was cited for hunting with an improper license.[37]

Contributions and Donor Activity

2016 Election Cycle

Kohler contributed to a number of Republican federal candidates in the 2016 election cycle. Many of the same candidates also received a large contributions and endorsements from Club for Growth. Numbers are taken from the Federal Election Commission website.[39]

  • $57,400 to the Republican National Committee
  • $46,000 to the National Republican Senatorial Committee
  • $2,700 to Warren Davidson (OH-08)
  • $2,700 to Ron Johnson (R-WI)
  • $2,700 to Jim Banks (IN-03)
  • $1,350 to Pam Galloway (IN-03), defeated by Banks
  • $2,700 to Tim Scott (R-SC)
  • $2,700 to Scott Walker (R)
  • $2,700 to Sean Duffy (WI-07)
  • $2,700 to Ron DeSantis (FL-06)
  • $2,700 to Pat Toomey (R-PA)
  • $2,700 to Bobby Jindal (R)
  • $2,500 to Kay Daly (NC-13)

Donations to Federal Independent Expenditure Groups

  • $126,000 to Club for Growth Action
  • $100,000 to Pro-Walker Unintimidated PAC
  • $60,000 to Pro-Ron Johnson Let America Work
  • $50,000 to Restoration PAC
  • $50,000 to Believe Again
  • $30,000 to Reform America Fund
  • $1,000 Tea Party Patriots Citizens Fund

Wisconsin State Politics

Kohler has been an influential figure in the Wisconsin political landscape throughout his life, so much so that the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel has called him "one of the biggest guns in the state Republican Party."

"Would I have been able to get Scott (Walker) to do that if I hadn't been contributing? Now if you want to call that access, go ahead," Kohler said in reference to the Wisconsin governor attending an event honoring Kohler's father and grandfather. "But the fact of the matter is, Scott's honored in that situation, too. He'll be in a room with two dead governors and himself."

Republican Wisconsin Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald said of Kohler, "If Terry sends me a letter, I read it."[35]

Wisconsin state level contribution numbers were accessed via the Wisconsin Democracy Campaign campaign finance database.[40]

Contributions made by Kohler to state level political campaigns in Wisconsin include:

  • $14,500 to Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker (R)
  • $14,499.94 to Wisconsin Lieutenant Governor Rebecca Kleefisch (R)
  • $8,000 to the Committee to Elect a Republican Senate
  • $3,150 to former Wisconsin State Senator Joe Liebham (R)
  • $2,000 to Wisconsin State Senator Shelia Harsdorf (R)
  • $1,500 to Wisconsin Senate Majority Leader Scott Fitzgerald (R)
  • $1,500 to Wisconsin State Senator Howard Marklein (R)
  • $1,000 to Wisconsin Attorney General Brad Schimel (R)
  • $1,000 to State Senator Leah Vukmir (R)
  • $1,000 to Wisconsin State Senator Jonathan Steitz (R)
  • $1,000 to Wisconsin State Senator Rick Gudex (R)
  • $1,000 to Wisconsin State Senator Alberta Darling (R)
  • $1,000 to Wisconsin State Senator Roger Roth (R)
  • $1,000 to Wisconsin State Senator Devin LeMahieu (R)
  • $1,000 to Wisconsin State Senator Luther Olsen (R)
  • $1,000 to Wisconsin State Senate candidate Dane Deutsch (R)
  • $1,000 to Wisconsin State Representative Travis Tranel (R)
  • $1,000 to Wisconsin State Representative John Nygren (R)
  • $1,000 to former Wisconsin Representative Michael Endsley (R)
  • $1,000 to Kimberly Jo Simac
  • $500 to Wisconsin State Representative Kathy Bernier (R)
  • $500 to Wisconsin State Representative Tom Larson (R)

Failed Political Campaigns

  • Terry Kohler received 29 percent of the vote in the 1980 Wisconsin Republican Senate primary, falling short to Robert Kasten, who recieved 36 percent of the vote.[41]
  • Kohler ran as a Republican in the 1982 Wisconsin Gubernatorial election. He lost to Democrat Anthony Earl 42 percent to 57 percent.[42]

Resources & Articles

Related PRWatch Articles

Related SourceWatch Articles


  1. National Governors Association, Walter Kohler Jr., organizational website, accessed May 25, 2016.
  2. National Governors Association, Walter J. Kohler Sr., organizational website, accessed May 25, 2016.
  3. Businessman, GOP donor Terry Kohler dies, WISC-TV, November 14, 2016
  4. Kenneth Lamke, Kohler rips Earl on tax, homosexual appointees, Milwaukee Sentinel, March 12, 1983.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Daniel Allegretti, "Wisconsin Council Leader Fired," Chicago Tribune, June 17, 1988.
  6. The Journal Editorial Conference, Why Mary Kohler had to be dumped, The Milwaukee Journal, June 16, 1988.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Steven Schultze, Kohler calls Thompson disloyal for firing her, The Milwaukee Journal, June 16, 1988.
  8. Bill Hurley, "Thompson ousts Kohler from council," The Milwaukee Journal, June 16, 1988.
  9. Steven Schultze, Women's council leader denies racism, The Milwaukee Journal, June 15, 1988.
  10. Lisa Graves, Group Called "Citizens for a Strong America" Operates out of a UPS Mail Drop but Runs Expensive Ads in Supreme Court Race?, PRWatch.org, April 2, 2011.
  11. Brendan Fischer, Kohler Heir and Walker Backer Plumbs Dark Money Depths, PRWatch.org, Nov 5, 2013.
  12. Coalition for America's Families, 2008 IRS Form 990 Tax Filing, Internal Revenue Service, November 15, 2010.
  13. Coalition for America's Families, Press Room: Coalition for America’s Families Announces New Television Ad, organizational press release, April 20, 2006, accessed via Wayback Machine July 1, 2016.
  14. Coalition for America's Families, Doyle Budget Raises Taxes & Fees by $368 Million, organizational website, archived by the WaybackMachine July 19, 2006.
  15. National Institute on Money in State Politics, The Money Behind the 2006 Marriage Amendments: TOP CONTRIBUTORS ACROSS THE STATES, followthemoney.org, July 23, 2007.
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  17. Key Ballot Measures, CNN, accessed June 29, 2016.
  18. Lucy Burns Institute, Section 13 of Article XIII of the Wisconsin Constitution, Ballotpedia, accessed June 29, 2016.
  19. Jason Stein, Patrick Marley, and Dana Ferguson, Federal judge overturns Wisconsin's gay marriage ban, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, June 7, 2014.
  20. Wisconsin Democracy Campaign, Hijacking Justice 2008, Issue Ads in the 2008 Supreme Court Campaign: Coalition for America's Families, February 22, 2008.
  21. Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania, First installment of our Court Watch series: Misleading voters about corruption, rape and murder in a battle to oust a Wisconsin justice, Factcheck.org, March 10, 2008.
  22. Friends of Justice Louis Butler, Untrue Ads Must Come Down: 60% Figure Found to be Completely False, campaign press release, March 11, 2008.
  23. Stacey Forster, Armstrong ad won't run on WISC-TV in Madison, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, March 10, 2008.
  24. "Group revises Supreme Court ad after station pulls it," Twin Cities Pioneer Press, March 7, 2008.
  25. 25.0 25.1 25.2 Brendan Fischer, Kohler Heir and Walker Backer Plumbs Dark Money Depths, PRWatch.org, November 5, 2013.
  26. Recall Race for Governor Cost $81 Million, Wisconsin Democracy Campaign Report, Jan 31, 2013
  27. Citizens for a Strong America, 2014 IRS Form 990: Citizens for a Strong America, Internal Revenue Service, November 16, 2015.
  28. 28.0 28.1 28.2 Brendan Fischer, Wisconsin Prepares to Hand Half-Million in Taxpayer Funds to Koch-Tied GOP Lobby Shop, PRWatch.org, August 27, 2013.
  29. 29.0 29.1 Patrick Marley and Jason Stein, Fishing trip underscores close ties between Suder, United Sportsmen, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, September 30, 2013.
  30. Americans for Prosperity, Luke Hilgemann, organizational website, accessed July 22, 2016.
  31. 31.0 31.1 Jason Stein and Paul Smith, Group with no training record may get $500,000 over 2 years, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, August 25, 2013.
  32. Brad Friedman, Dirty Tricks in WI: Deceptive Absentee Ballot Mailers Appear to be Coordinated Hoaxes, The Brad Blog, August 6, 2011.
  33. Brad Friedman, 'National Director' of Koch's 'Americans for Prosperity' Created Mysterious WI 'Gun Group,' Coordinated Misleading Absentee Ballot Mailings, The Brad Blog, August 8, 2011.
  34. Terry J. Kohler, Letter to Scott Fitzgerald, May 13, 2013.
  35. 35.0 35.1 Jason Stein, Patrick Marley and Paul Smith, United Sportsmen's group had Terry Kohler as staunch ally, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, September 15, 2013.
  36. Jason Stein and Patrick Marley, Nonprofit or for-profit? Embattled sportsmen's group's tax status murky, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, September 10, 2013.
  37. 37.0 37.1 Paul Smith and Jason Stein, Scott Walker cancels $500,000 grant to sportsmen's group with GOP ties, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, September 5, 2013.
  38. Patrick Marley, United Sportsmen head misstates status of hunting law, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, September 30, 2013.
  39. Federal Election Commission, Search: Kohler, Terry, FEC filings, accessed June 23, 2016.
  40. Wisconsin Democracy Campaign, Campaign Finance Database: Terry Kohler, organizational website, accessed May 25, 2016.
  41. Our Campaigns, WI US Senate - R Primary, ourcampaigns.com, accessed June 23, 2016.
  42. David Leip and K. Dobrev, 1982 Gubernatorial General Election Results - Wisconsin , David Leip's Atlas of U.S. Presidential Elections, accesed June 23, 2016.