Wis. candidates got $758K from sand, gas industry

CREATED May 22, 2013

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  • Voter Jared Nusbaum checks his ballot after voting at St. Mark's Episcopal Church in Milwaukee. Image by Kristyna Wentz-Graff - Journal Sentinel

MADISON, Wis. (AP) -- A new report says the sand mining and natural gas industries have given Wisconsin candidates nearly $758,000 since 2007, with contributions spiking last year as sand mining took off in the state.

The Wisconsin Democracy Campaign study found the gas and sand mining industries gave candidates a total of $18,762 in 2007 when only five sand mines were operating in the state. Last year the industries gave candidates $413,642.

About 100 mines and processing plants were running in Wisconsin that year. Demand for silica sand is grown because it's used in hydraulic fracturing, or "fracking," a process that produces oil and gas.

Republican Gov. Scott Walker received the most money of any candidate over that six year period, accepting $520,266.