Wealthy citizens who have donated heavily to political campaigns in the current year include supporters of both the major U.S. political parties, though none of the others comes close to billionaire philanthropist George Soros, who has given more than $128 million to help elect Democrats, according to a new tally released by OpenSecrets, a Washington-based research organization.
The recipients of donations are not limited solely to individual candidates but also include parties, political action committees (PACs), the hybrid PACs known as Carey committees, and tax-exempt 527 organizations.
Soros, operating under the aegis of Soros Fund Management, leads the pack with a total of almost $128.5 million in donations, all of it to Democrat candidates and causes.
The next three slots on OpenSecrets’s list are occupied by individuals who have spent lavishly to support Republicans. They are Richard Uihlein, chief executive officer of shipping firm Uline, who donated $80.7 million; Kenneth C. Griffin, chief executive officer of the Citadel hedge fund, who gave $68.6 million; and Jeffrey S. and Janine Yass, the co-founder of technology firm Susquehanna International Group and his spouse, who gave almost $47.3 million.
Some of the names on the list, such as entrepreneur Timothy Mellon, who occupies the fifth slot, donated to both Democrat and Republican candidates and causes. Of Mellon’s total of about $40 million, the vast majority went to Republicans, with $10,700 going to Democrats.