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News Wednesday, Apr 19 2017

Adelson Owns Trump

Apr 19, 2017

“Trump is as owned by his megadonors as any other elected Republican. Adelson gifted Trump $5 million for his inauguration, and in return got exclusive inaugural perksprivate dinner with Trump at the White House, and — most important to Adelson — a policy agenda that will deliver him massive tax cuts. Meanwhile, Trump is selling out working Americans and trying to strip 26 million of their healthcare.” — Brad Bainum, American Bridge Spokesperson

New York Times: Sheldon Adelson Gave $5 Million for Trump’s Inauguration

WASHINGTON — Sheldon G. Adelson, the casino magnate and stalwart Republican donor, gave $5 million to support the festivities surrounding President Trump’s inauguration.

The gift was the largest single contribution ever given to an inauguration, but 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.

A 510-page disclosure filed with the Federal Election Commission on Tuesday shows more than two dozen million-dollar checks from corporations and wealthy individuals, including Robert K. Kraft, the owner of the New England Patriots and a close friend of Mr. Trump’s; Steven A. Cohen and Charles Schwab, both billionaire investors; and Robert R. Parsons, the founder of

In previous inaugurations, individuals were only allowed to make contributions up to $250,000.

Altogether Mr. Trump raised $107 million for his inauguration, twice the previous fund-raising record, which was set by Barack Obama in 2009.

The inaugural committee announced its fund-raising total on Tuesday, but because it filed its report by hand, the document was not publicly available until Wednesday.

Some of the biggest checks came from corporate executives, lobbyists, and businesses who would soon have major interests at stake under a Trump administration, from the energy sector to Wall Street. Other big contributions came from donors or interest groups who had held their noses when Mr. Trump won the Republican nomination — or even staunchly opposed him.

Their money flowed despite — and perhaps because of — Mr. Trump’s promises to “drain the swamp” of Washington corruption and influence-peddling, both of which show little sign of abating in the first months of his presidency.

Mr. Trump’s inaugural committee is not required to report how it spent money on his inauguration festivities, which included more than 20 events and drew modest crowds. Nor do the documents reveal if any funds were left over after the crowds returned home. (The committee said on Tuesday it would donate any such funds to charities still being selected.)

The biggest donors received invitations to a slate of private, behind-the-scenes events in the week leading up to the inauguration, where they mingled with members of Mr. Trump’s inner circle. The exclusive events included dinners honoring the inaugural chairman, Vice President Mike Pence, cabinet nominees and the first family. Mr. Trump made an appearance at each one.

Donors also received special access to the week’s more public events, from inaugural balls to the swearing-in itself. Some were even invited to use Mr. Trump’s new Washington hotel, just blocks from the White House, as an informal gathering place for the week.

Perhaps no donors were rewarded with greater access than the Adelsons, stalwarts of Republican fund-raising who only threw their support behind Mr. Trump late in his campaign. Mr. Trump singled out the couple to thank them for their support during a luncheon honoring congressional Republicans on inauguration eve. The following morning, the pair sat along the aisle just a few rows back from Mr. Trump on the inaugural platform as he took the oath of office.

Published: Apr 19, 2017

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