GOP candidate for Wisconsin gov donated to anti-LGBTQ groups

Tim Michaels. Wikimedia Commons

Wisconsin GOP gubernatorial candidate Tim Michaels has donated to anti-LGBTQ groups, according to media reports.

The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel reported Wednesday that Michaels’foundation had donated large sums of money to anti-LGBTQ and anti-choice groups both in Wisconsin and across the country. He and his wife had given a total of $250,000 in 2020, 15% of all their donations that year.

The newspaper reported that the Michels foundation gave a total of $175,000 in 2020 to Wisconsin Right to Life and Pro Life Wisconsin Education Task Force and Avail NYC, a New York City crisis pregnancy center. It had also donated to Miami-based Christ Fellowship and Pewaukee, Wisc.-based Spring Creek Church.

According to the Journal-Sentinel, Christ Fellowship pastor Omar Giritli preached in May that God believed transgender individuals were an “abomination” and a “rebellion to their creator.” 

Spring Creek Church’s Pastor Chip Bernhard has suggested that people who have an abortion need forgiveness, and allowing transgender children to use the bathroom of their choice is “awful.”

Campaign spokesperson Anna Kelly told the newspaper that the Michels family’s philanthropy is not political. 

“While the media is desperate to find lines of attack, their generosity helps support causes they believe in and funds cancer research and other Christian causes,” Kelly said. 

“When people tell you who they are, believe them.” said Mike Murray, executive director of Planned Parenthood Advocates of Wisconsin. “Few things are more telling about someone than the organizations and causes to which they donate their money. Tim Michels has given substantial dollars to special interest groups that advocate to ban access to abortion care—even in cases of rape and incest and if a woman’s life is at risk. One of these organizations even wants to ban birth control.”

Murray said the groups goals were out of step with the majority of people in Wisconsin and posed a health risk to people.

“The importance of reelecting Governor Evers couldn’t be clearer when it comes to determining the future of personal freedom and access to health care in Wisconsin,” he said.