Are super PACs becoming captive to hedge funders? Six give nearly $10 million to presidential groups in March alone
Hedge fund managers know something about when to hold and when to fold. Last month, they did more of the former when it came to political giving, holding steady with their pattern of making uber-contributions to presidential super PACs — even after the favored candidate of some of them dropped out of the race.
Wall Street dominates political giving. But it’s these donors, a much smaller subset of the securities sector, who play with the biggest money.
The month of March saw more big contributions to presidential super PACs from James Simons, Robert Mercer, Donald Sussman, Paul Singer , George Soros and Cliff Asness in particular. The six men — founders of investment companies that manage hedge funds, or high-risk private funds that often require seven-figure buy-ins from their investors — anted up a total of $9.5 million to presidentially focused super PACs for the month, bringing their total gifts to these groups to $33.5 million for the cycle.
Forget the presidential — top-spending House races stir (and revive) rivalries
To find some of the best story lines this side of the presidential contest, look no further than the tubs of money sloshing around in congressional races. The cash being spent in the Beltway-straddling Maryland 8th District is in another stratosphere. David Trone, the founder of a major alcoholic beverage retailer and a Donald Trump-style self-funder running as a Democrat, has put nearly $10 million of his own money into the race, almost half of the $25 million Trump put into his presidential bid in the first quarter of this year. Trone, who didn’t declare his candidacy until late January, had spent almost all that money by the end of March, according to the latest filings with the Federal Election Commission. But ... read more.
Self-financed candidates open their wallets in early months of 2016, despite poor track record
Fifteen candidates running for open seats or challenging incumbents around the country have themselves provided more than half the funds they raised in the first quarter of 2016, a Center for Responsive Politics analysis of new campaign finance data shows. The self-funding candidates range from Democrat David Trone in Maryland’s 8th District, who’s financing his own campaign to the tune of nearly $10 million, to Tim D’Annunzio in North Carolina’s 8th District, who’s mounting a challenge to fellow Republican Rep. Richard Hudson and has given $71,000 of the $71,016 his campaign has raised. Trone is a co-owner of Total Wine & More and has long been a Democratic ... read more.
COMING SOON: Stay tuned. Next week CRP launches Phase I of a major tool to help monitor dark money.
In Boston this June? Come listen to Viveca Novak and Sarah Bryner explain the story behind money-in-politics data.