Billionaire philanthropist George Soros, who funds progressive drives and causes worldwide, donated another $500,000 to a political action committee opposing the campaign to recall California Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom, bringing his total contributions to $1 million.
Filings with the California Secretary of State’s office show Soros’ latest contribution to a group called “Stop The Republican Recall of Governor Newsom” was made on Monday, August 30. It was his third gift to the PAC thus far, following a pair of $250,000 donations.
The New York-based Soros has a history of supporting reform-minded district attorney candidates and criminal justice reform efforts in California.
Voters will decide whether to oust Newsom in a special recall election in less than two weeks on September 14.
The Associated Press reported, “Under state rules, Newsom alone is allowed to raise money in unlimited amounts, while other candidates must adhere to contribution limits.”
— Rob Pyers (@rpyers) August 31, 2021
Newsom launched the committee in March, claiming the drive to recall him was a partisan effort. The governor’s campaign has reportedly raised more than $63 million. Its website alleges a “coalition of national Republicans, anti-vaxxers, Q-Anon conspiracy theorists, and anti-immigrant Trump supporters” are behind the campaign.
However, former California Democrat Majority Leader Gloria Romero has endorsed GOP frontrunner Larry Elder, and polls indicate that many other Democrats also support the recall.
FiveThirtyEight recently published an updated average of several polls that showed an average of 48.8% supported keeping Newsom in his current role, while removing him is polling at an average of 47.6%. Practically every public survey indicates the question is within the margin of error.
According to The Hill, “National Democrats and California’s most powerful labor unions are pouring late cash into the race to save Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) from a recall election he faces next month as his team floods the airwaves in a last-minute blitz,” and:
Pro-Newsom campaigns and independent groups have spent or reserved almost $30 million in airtime across the state, according to the nonpartisan media monitoring firm AdImpact. Republican candidates running to unseat Newsom have spent or reserved less than half that much.
This week alone, Democratic groups are spending $3 million on television and radio advertising, according to AdImpact. Republican campaigns are spending just more than $1.4 million over the same period, about $880,000 of which comes from conservative Republican radio host Larry Elder.
Netflix co-CEO Reed Hastings has contributed $3,000,000 to help the governor. In addition, two SEIU locals have chipped in more than $3,250,000. And the Democratic Governors Association reportedly gave Newsom’s PAC at least $5 million last month.
Other top individual donors to Newsom’s anti-recall committee include real estate tycoon George Marcus ($1,000,000), Connie Balmer, the wife of former Microsoft CEO and Los Angeles Clippers owner Steve Balmer ($1 million), Priscilla Chan, wife of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg ($750,000), and Hollywood mogul Jeffrey Katzenberg ($500,000).
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Author : Jeffrey Cawood