About a dozen billionaires are among the individuals who have given the most money to 527 groups for the 2004 election. Fourteen are on the Forbes list of richest Americans. Sixteen of the top donors to the 527 groups are Democrats and eight are Republicans. Eight out of every $10 given to a 527 group by an individual was at least $250,000. Figures for donations to 527 groups are based upon the latest data available at deadline.
DONATION CAMPAIGN 400 RICHEST
TO 527 CONTRIBUTIONS AMERICANS NAME
AGE PARTY STATE 2003-04 FROM 1990 RANK/NET WORTH George Soros 74 D NY $23,250,000 $715,400 24/$7.2B BACKGROUND: Hedge fund founder who has given nearly $5 billion to promote democracy in more than 50 countries. Funded U.S. efforts to reform campaign finance laws, decriminalize marijuana and change criminal justice system. Peter B. Lewis 71 D OH $19,170,000 $392,750 152/$1.6B BACKGROUND: Chairman of insurer Progressive Corp. Once called one of the country's 10 most generous philanthropists. Bankrolled marijuana petition drives on statewide ballot initiatives. Stephen L. 39 D CA $13,100,000 $9,482,000 389/$750M Bing BACKGROUND: Heir to family New York real estate fortune, Hollywood producer. Major supporter of Sen. John Edwards, giving $900,000 to his 527 group. Herb 73(74) D CA $5,964,078 $583,300 337/$920M (and Marion) Sandler BACKGROUND: Founded Golden West Financial. Active with philanthropic and political causes. Linda
51 D MT $5,750,000 $13,000 165/$1.5B Pritzker BACKGROUND: One of 11 heirs divvying up the Pritzker empire, owner of Hyatt hotels and other businesses. Co-founder of EWAM, a Buddhist enclave in St. Ignatius, Mont. $3.9 million of 527 donation made through Sustainable World Corp. Dawn 45(65) R CA $5,000,000 $2,021,250 106/$2.0B (and Roland) Arnall BACKGROUND: Co-chairman of Ameriquest Capital. A Bush "Ranger" ($250,000 or more) who hosted a fundraiser for the president's campaign. Gave $10,000 for House Democrats in 2003. Alexander G. 81 R CA $5,000,000 $1,300,977 260/$1.1B Spanos BACKGROUND: California real estate development mogul and San Diego Chargers (NFL) owner. A "Pioneer" fundraiser ($100,000 or more for Bush in 2000 and "Ranger" this election). Also gave to Bush recount, legal defense and inaugural funds. T. Boone 76 R TX $4,022,000 $358,760 389/$750M Pickens Jr. BACKGROUND: Famed 1980s corporate raider, the former head of Mesa Petroleum runs BP Capital investment fund, which has performed well in the Bush administration. A. Jerrold 74 R CA $4,000,000 $1,213,250 72/$2.7B Perenchio BACKGROUND: CEO and chairman of Univision, the Spanish language broadcaster, and president of Chartwell Partners, a real estate holding company. Donor to both parties and personal friends with President Bush and his father. Achieved "Pioneer" fundraising status for Bush campaign this election. Harold C. 73 R TX $3,800,000 $303,609 106/$2B Simmons BACKGROUND: Corporate raider of the 1980s and early '90s, this Texas investor owns sugar, chemical and waste companies. Wants to build nuclear waste site in Texas. Previously fined by the FEC in 1993 for exceeding donation limits. John McHale 48(47) D TX $3,000,000 $12,500 no listing (and Christine Mattsson) BACKGROUND: He is the co-founder and chairman of TippingPoint Technologies Inc., a computer security systems company, and a former NetSpeed executive. Andrew S. 47(46) D CA $2,685,000 $336,000 no listing (and Deb) Rappaport BACKGROUND: A partner with August Capital, supports groups that register Hispanics and under-30 voters. Bob J. Perry 72(62) R TX $2,490,000 $630,000 no listing (and Doylene) BACKGROUND: Houston homebuilder and founder of Perry Homes, ranked as the nation's 42nd largest home builder. John(Jay) 76 D PA $2,312,000 $310,400 no listing A. Harris IV BACKGROUND: Heir to the Standard Oil fortune and philanthropist, interested in population control and environmental issues. Fred Eychaner 60 D IL $2,150,000 $7,792,550 no listing BACKGROUND: Media entrepreneur who is sole owner of Newsweb Corp. Philanthropic interests include AIDS, the arts, and Northwestern University's Medill Innocence Project, which works to free wrongly convicted death row inmates. Carl H. 85 R OH $2,020,000 $3,873,000 124/$1.8B Lindner Jr. BACKGROUND: "Ranger" status fundraiser for Bush campaign this election, the chief executive of American Financial Group is also majority owner of the Cincinnati Reds, and former chairman of Chiquita Bananas. Agnes Varis 74 D NY $2,001,000 $1,254,994 no listing BACKGROUND: Founder and president of Agvar Chemicals and Aegis Pharmaceuticals, a generic drug production and supply companies. Also, vice chair of the Generic Pharmaceutical Association. Richard M. 78 R MI $2,000,000 $339,566 60/$3B DeVos Sr. BACKGROUND: Amway co-founder, owner of the Orlando Magic, former finance chairman of the Republican National Committee. His foundation is listed by National Journal as one of the top 10 funders of conservative causes. Jay VanAndel 80 R MI $2,000,000 $351,100 65/$2.9B BACKGROUND: Amway co-founder and trustee of Heritage Foundation. Active with the founding and funding a medical research institute. Phillip T. 55(54) D MA $2,000,000
$375 no listing "Terry" (and Susan) Ragon BACKGROUND: Founder and CEO of Cambridge-based company InterSystems, which develops database technology used by health care companies and other industries. Alida R. 55 D NY $1,658,000 $880,600 no listing Messinger BACKGROUND: Standard Oil heir, sister of Sen. John D. Rockefeller IV (D- W.Va.) and trustee of the Rockefeller Family Fund. Interested in environmental and conservation issues. Lewis B. 85(86) D NY $1,650,000 $339,210 no listing (and Dorothy) Cullman BACKGROUND: Very active philanthropist, he made his fortune through leveraged buyouts. He has given away more than $223 million to cultural, educational and scientific charities in the New York area and plans on donating another $100 million before his death. Alice Walton 55 R TX $1,600,000 $439,900 4/$18B BACKGROUND: Walmart heir considered to be the richest U.S. woman and the wealthiest Texan. Active with the Walton Family Foundation and the breeding and raising of quarter horses. Robert D. 42 D WA $1,195,000 $270,250 no listing Glaser BACKGROUND: RealNetworks founder and chief executive who attended a retreat at George Soros's Southampton home that launched America Coming Together. John R. 73 D MI $1,057,500 $351,298 no listing Hunting BACKGROUND: Grandson of one of the founders of furniture manufacturer Steelcase. Head of the Beldon Fund, which focuses on environmental advocacy. SOURCE: Graphics reporting by Alice Crites and James V. Grimaldi, with data gathered by the Center for Public Integrity from the Internal Revenue Service and the Federal Election Commission.