For Immediate Release

Organization Profile: 
Contact: 

Chuck Collins, Chuck@ips-dc.org
Bob Keener, 617-610-6766, Bobk@ips-dc.org

Trump’s Billionaire Enablers: The 63 Billionaires Worth $243 Billion Who Bankrolled Trumps Re-Election Bid

WASHINGTON - While much has been made of the shock and dismay at last week’s insurrection by America’s corporate leaders, new analysis by the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS) identified 63 (almost one in ten) U.S. billionaires who gave a combined $33 million to the Trump Victory Fund in the last two years, one of several campaign funding vehicles. The Trump Victory Fund was a joint fundraising account for the Trump 2020 campaign and the Republican National Committee.

“The titans of our economy have no right to feel shocked,” said Chuck Collins, Director of the Project on Inequality and the Common Good, at IPS. “They enabled Donald Trump. They bankrolled his campaigns. And they cheered as Trump cut their taxes, swept away regulations that pinched their profits, and packed the courts with judges eager to wink at their transgressions.

“Unlike those who gave to the 2016 campaign but distanced themselves from Trump after seeing him in action, these billionaires and plenty of others gave substantial donations in 2019 and 2020, when it was clear that Trump was causing a crisis in our democracy. Will there be any accountability for these recent billionaire enablers of Donald Trump, who saw what damage he caused and still stood by him?” he asked.

IPS found that as of January 8, 2021, these 63 billionaire Trump Victory Fund donors have combined wealth of $243.7 billion dollars (using real-time estimates from Wealth-X and Forbes). This is more than the wealth of the bottom half of all U.S. households combined, an estimated 159 million people.

The top ten billionaire donors to the Trump Victory Fund, with combined wealth of $82.6 billion, are:

  1. Gas pipeline magnate Kelcy Lee Warren, worth $2.9 billion, gave eight donations totaling $2,248,906.
  2. Retired CEO of Marvel Entertainment, Isaac Perlmutter, is worth $5.8 billion and donated $1,871,200.
  3. Telecommunications mogul Kenny Troutt, worth $1.5 billion, donated $1,849,000.
  4. Biotech investor Robert Duggan, worth $2.6 billion, donated $1,638,200 to the Trump Victory Fund. In the final days of the campaign, Duggan gave $4.6 million to various Trump campaign groups, according to Forbes.
  5. Casino magnate Steve Wynn, worth $3 billion, contributed over $1,523,500.
  6. Casino owner, Phillip Gene Ruffin, worth $2.3 billion, donated $1,375,000.
  7. Owner of ABC Supply, the giant home supplier, Diane Hendricks $8 billion (Forbes), donated $1,175,000.
  8. Casino megadonor Sheldon Adelson, and his wife Miriam Adelson, worth over $35.9 billion (Forbes), contributed $1.16 million, along with massive donations to other Republican PACs and candidates.
  9. Texas Banker Daniel Andrew Beal, worth $7.5 billion, gave $1,161,200.
  10. Software entrepreneur David Duffield, worth $13.3 billion, donated $1,151,600.

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 Other notable billionaires to the Trump Victory Fund include:

  • Blackstone CEO Stephen Schwarzman, worth $20.9 billion, who gave $355,000.
  • Johnson & Johnson heir Robert Wood Johnson IV, worth $2.5 billion, contributed $575,000.
  • Hedge fund manager John Paulson, worth $4.2 billion, donated $831,372.
  • Heir to the cosmetic fortune, Ronald Steven Lauder, worth $5.2 billion, gave $100,000.

The 63 billionaires identified by IPS are:

screen_shot_2021-01-12_at_9.09.45_am.png

IPS publishes regular reports on billionaire wealth in collaboration with Americans for Tax Fairness, most recently, “US Billionaires Total Wealth Grows to $4 Trillion – Over $1 Trillion since Beginning of Pandemic.”  Additional reports include, “Billionaire Wealth vs. Community Health” with Bargaining for the Common Good and United for Respect, and a report in April, Billionaire Bonanza 2020: Wealth Windfalls, Tumbling Taxes, and Pandemic Profiteers.

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Institute for Policy Studies turns Ideas into Action for Peace, Justice and the Environment. We strengthen social movements with independent research, visionary thinking, and links to the grassroots, scholars and elected officials. I.F. Stone once called IPS "the think tank for the rest of us." Since 1963, we have empowered people to build healthy and democratic societies in communities, the US, and the world. Click here to learn more, or read the latest below.

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