A billboard reading: "RFK Jr, Powered by MAGA/Trump"

As Robert F. Kennedy Jr. campaigns in Grand Rapids, Michigan on February 9, 2024, a billboard paid for by the Democratic National Committee highlights how his super PAC is allegedly receiving millions from Donald Trump's largest donor, Timothy Mellon.

(Photo: Emily Elconin/Getty Images for DNC)

New Video Details Billionaire Trump Donors Bankrolling RFK Jr.'s Run

"Kennedy's donors know that he'll never step foot in the White House, but that was never their goal. Their goal is to ensure that Trump does."

A video published Tuesday by More Perfect Union sheds light on the ultrawealthy Republican donors to presumptive GOP nominee and former President Donald Trump's campaign coffers who are also financing Robert F. Kennedy Jr.'s independent White House run—which many observers see as a potential spoiler for President Joe Biden's reelection bid.

The video—which came as Kennedy announced that California lawyer and philanthropist Nicole Shanahan is his running mate—underscores that the conspiracy theorist and former Democrat's biggest campaign contributor was also Trump's top donor in 2020.

"Who exactly is bankrolling RFK Jr.'s presidential push?" asked Brian Tyler Cohen, the popular YouTuber and political commentator who narrates the seven-minute video. "It turns out the answer has a lot more to do with Trump than putting a Kennedy back in the White House."

Kennedy said that he had nothing to do with the multimillion-dollar ad supporting his campaign that aired during the Super Bowl last month.

"American Values 2024, a super political action committee (PAC) backing Kennedy, dropped a cool 7 million bucks for the spot, which about 124 million people saw," Cohen said. "And propping up American Values 2024 is a large group of big donors... a bunch of millionaires and billionaires who are driven by one goal: to get RFK Jr. on the ballot in all key states across the country."

"Doing a majority of the legwork here is the super PAC's biggest donor, Timothy Mellon," the video notes. "More than half of the $38 million raised by American Values this cycle has come from Timothy Mellon alone."

The video continues:

Mellon, who hails from the 34th-richest family in America, and likened anti-poverty programs to slavery, has long been a significant Reopublican donor. He's given tens of millions to Republican congressional super PACs. He's generously funded Trump's super PAC, Make America Great Again Inc., to the tune of $16.5 million over the span of just two years. He was even Trump's top donor in 2020, and it doesn't look like he's going to stop tossing money at Trump anytime soon. His last donation of $5 million to the pro-Trump PAC came on January 30, 2024. Just 22 days prior, he sent the same amount to the pro-Kennedy PAC, making it pretty clear that Timothy Mellon doesn't want Kennedy, he knows Kennedy can spoil a Biden win, so he's keeping him afloat.

Boston Globe reporter Lissandra Villa de Petrzelka noted earlier this month that Mellon's donation record "is not linear."

"He has supported Democrats such as Sen. Joe Manchin, a centrist from West Virginia; progressive Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez of New York; and former Rep. Tulsi Gabbard of Hawaii and Sen. Kyrsten Sinema of Arizona, both Democrats before they left the party."

"But overwhelmingly, Mellon's money has funded conservative causes," she wrote. "According toThe Texas Tribune, he donated millions in stock to Texas for a fundraising effort for a border wall. The Wall Street Journal reported he also donated more than a million dollars to a legal defense fund set up by Jan Brewer, then-governor of Arizona, for an immigration crackdown law that received national backlash and was partially struck down in the courts."

Mellon isn't the only GOP megadonor funding Kennedy's campaign. According to the video, billionaire security specialist and author Gavin de Becker has donated more money to Kennedy—$10 million, so far—than to any other cause he's ever supported. Kennedy's campaign has paid de Becker's security firm $1.9 million for services and travel expenses during the 2024 run.

Cohen said that "one of the more mysterious sources of funding" for American Values 2024 is Planeta Management LLC," which has given the super PAC $4 million."

Because there is no listed name for the organization's leader on its filing papers, "we have no idea who the third-biggest donor to Kennedy' bid is," the video states.

"We do know his fourth-biggest donor, though," Cohen said. Leila Centner—who has supported Trump and disgraced former New York Republican Congressman George Santos—has given $1 million to Kennedy's campaign.

The video notes that Centner is the co-founder and CEO of Centner Academy, a private school with a policy of "trying to keep teachers and staff from getting lifesaving Covid vaccinations" because she believes that "tens of thousands of women all over the world have had adverse effects including hemorrhaging and miscarriages just by being near someone who had the vaccine."

Perhaps the nation's most prominent vaccine skeptic, Kennedy toldFox News last year that he still believes the thoroughly debunked theory that vaccines cause autism. A 2019 measles epidemic in Samoa that killed scores of people, most of them children, has been linked to a prior visit by Kennedy in which he, his wife Cheryl Hines, and anti-vaccine activists spread deadly misinformation.

Kennedy has brushed off criticism about his donors' political agenda.

"The [Democratic National Committee] is saying that one of my PACs, which I have nothing to do with... accepted money from a traditionally Republican donor, that somehow it should disqualify me from people voting for me," he said last month. "We get money from Democrats, Republicans, and Independents; I'm proud that we're reaching across party lines, that we're trying to bridge the divide."

The DNC has a dubious history of crushing third-party and independent challengers.

The new video notes that "all of these pro-Kennedy donations have so far been bearing fruit in a big way."

"With the help of American Values 2024, Kennedy has gotten on ballots in key states like Nevada and New Hampshire," Cohen said. "Additionally, he'll appear on the ballot in Hawaii and Utah... and Georgia, Arizona, and Michigan, three critical swing states with razor-thin margins."

"Kennedy's donors know that he'll never step foot in the White House, but that was never their goal," he added. "Their goal is to ensure that Trump does."

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