Wednesday, 26 April, 2017

Billionaires, companies power Trump's record inaugural haul

On Last Day to File Taxes Protesters Call For Trump to Release His Taxes On Tax Day Protesters Call For Trump to Release His Taxes
Kelley Robertson | 20 April, 2017, 06:50

President Donald Trump raised $107 million for his inaugural festivities, almost double the previous record set by President Barack Obama eight years ago.

On Tuesday, a Federal Election Commission filing revealed that the Las Vegas Sands casino owner and anti-online gambling curmudgeon had contributed $5m to Trump's coming out party in Washington this January. Trump's inaugural committee raised more than twice as much as Barack Obama's in 2009.

Hedge fund manager Steven Cohen, who gave $3 million to the super PAC backing Gov. Chris Christie's presidential campaign, was another $1 million donor to the Trump inaugural committee. And they gained access to a private lunch with the new president and lawmakers at the Capitol.

Other $1 million donors to the former owner of the New Jersey Generals of the defunct United States Football League included: Washington Redskins owner Daniel Snyder, Texas owner Robert McNair, Madison Square Garden, owner of the New York Knicks, Rangers and Liberty, also contributed $1 million.

Trump's associates and longtime friends also contributed a significant amount of money.

Several of the $1 million corporate donors were directly affected by actions taken by Trump since he became president in January.

Steve Wynn donated $729,217 in entertainment through Wynn Resorts.

Additional $1 million contributors from the energy sector include a trust tied to billionaire coal operator Joseph Craft and John Hess, the chief executive of the Hess Corp., an oil and gas exploration and production company.

AT&T gave almost $2.1 million in cash and services.

Donations from foreign nationals are banned.

The top headlines from JournalStar.com. Kerrigan said the inaugural events may have served as an opportunity for donors who held back during the presidential campaign to try to curry favor by showing support for the incoming president.

Billionaire investor Paul Singer, for example, gave $1 million after long expressing skepticism about Trump.

Though this report shows how much money Trump's inauguration brought in, it does not detail exactly how that money was spent.

For Trump, the fast pace of fundraising appears to have continued past Inauguration Day.

Unlike Trump, the 2009 committee did not accept corporate contributions and limited individual donations to a maximum of $50,000. Four years before that, Obama raised more than $53 million, a record at the time.

Inaugural committees have broad leeway in how they spend their money and what they do with the leftovers, although some limitations apply, according to Fischer.

The gift was the largest single contribution ever given to an inauguration, The New York Times reported Wednesday, adding that Adelson's donation was "far from the only seven-figure check deposited by the committee responsible for carrying out much of the pomp leading up to Mr. Trump's swearing in".

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