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Gov. Walker raises $13.2 million in 3 months

Governor Scott Walker signs a ceremonial bill at the Wisconsin State Capitol on March 11, 2011 in Madison, Wisconsin. UPI/David Banks | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/6a1b120f5c8851fdd89fb50118221449/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
Governor Scott Walker signs a ceremonial bill at the Wisconsin State Capitol on March 11, 2011 in Madison, Wisconsin. UPI/David Banks | License Photo

MADISON, Wis., May 1 (UPI) -- Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker raised $13.2 million in three months for his battle against a bid to recall him, far outpacing Democratic challengers, records show.

A third of Walker's money, $4.4 million, came from out of state, and he has raised more than $25 million since January 2011 and has $4.9 million cash on hand, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.

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"Wisconsin's never seen anything like this kind of money," said Jay Heck, executive director of Common Cause in Wisconsin. "This is all to persuade a relatively tiny universe of undecided voters. It'll be the highest cost per voter spent in the history of the nation in terms of the cost of persuading people."

The recall effort against Walker, a Republican, began soon after he pushed through the GOP legislature a law last year effectively ending collective bargaining rights for most state workers.

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Democratic rivals have raised much less. Former Dane County Executive Kathleen Falk raised $977,999 and had $118,000 cash on hand, but an independent group supporting Falk received $4.5 million, most of it from unions and a third of it from out of state, the Journal Sentinel said.

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Donors can normally give a maximum of $10,000 to a candidate for governor. But from the time a recall petition is taken out until a recall election, donors can give any amount to a candidate targeted for recall. Democrats had to face regular fundraising limits because they're not targeted by the recall.

Barrett is to face Falk in the May 8 Democratic primary, in which Secretary of State Doug La Follette and state Sen. Kathleen Vinehout of Alma are also running.

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The general recall election is set for June 5.

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