Data reveal top five donors to Obama, Romney campaigns
By Jack Gillum and Stephen Braun ,AP
October 21, 2012, 12:01 am TWN
WASHINGTON -- Who are the biggest donors to the campaigns of President Barack Obama and Republican challenger Mitt Romney? The Associated Press examined more than 2.3 million campaign contributions and ranked the top five financial supporters for each.
Those donors and others are funding a presidential election on track to cost nearly US$2 billion, with money going toward individual Democratic and Republican campaigns as well as independent, "super" political committees working on the campaigns' behalf.
The largest declared donor overall is casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, who is worth an estimated US$25 billion. He has donated US$34.2 million so far to aid Romney and organizations supporting Romney this election.
All five of the top Romney donors gave more money than the top Obama donor, movie producer Jeffrey Katzenberg.
Big-dollar donors can have big influence. They are often invited to state dinners at the White House and other events with the president. They also may be asked to weigh in on public policy, especially if it affects their financial interests. And the ranks of ambassadors, advisory panels and other government jobs traditionally are filled with those who have been generous during the campaign.
Here are the top five Obama donors:
No. 1: Jeffrey Katzenberg, 61, Hollywood film producer and chief executive of DreamWorks Animation.
Total: US$2.566 million
No. 2: Irwin Jacobs, 78, the founder and former chairman of Qualcomm.
Total: US$2.122 million
No. 3 (tie): Fred Eychaner, founder of Chicago-based alternative-newspaper publisher Newsweb Corp.
Total: US$2.066 million
No. 3 (tie): Jon Stryker, 54, a Michigan philanthropist.
Total: US$2.066 million
No. 5: Steve Mostyn, 41, a Houston-based personal injury attorney.
Total: US$2.003 million
Here are the top five Romney donors:
No. 1: Sheldon Adelson, 79, owner of the Las Vegas Sands casino empire.
Total: US$34.2 million
No. 2: Bob J. Perry, 80, head of a Houston real estate empire worth an estimated US$650 million.
Total: US$17.3 million
No. 3: Harold Simmons, 81, owner of Contran Corp., a Dallas-based conglomerate worth an estimated US$9 billion that specializes in metals and chemical production and waste management.
Total: US$16.5 million
No. 4: Robert Rowling, 58, head of Dallas-based TRT Holdings.
Total: US$4.1 million
No. 5: William Koch, 72, an industrialist whose South Florida-based energy and mining conglomerate is worth an estimated US$4 billion.
Total: US$4 million
In-depth profiles about the donors will appear on The China Post's Features page tomorrow.