The major donors who supported the GOP establishment’s favored candidates during the primaries are now standing on the sidelines or have switched sides to support Hillary Clinton, says a survey by the Los Angeles Times.
Ninety-five percent of GOP primary donors are “sitting out” the general election, the newspaper found. Also, donors who backed Trump’s 16 primary rivals have already given $2 million to Clinton, while sending only $7.4 million from to Trump.
Overall, FEC records through August 31 show Clinton brought in $530 million while Trump lagged with $186 million in donations.
Trump, however, raised $5 million on August 31 alone from small donors on the day he held a joint press conference in Mexico with President Enrique Peña Nieto and gave a powerful speech on immigration policy in Phoenix, Arizona. In less than three months, Trump raised over $100 million from small donations, prompting one operative to call him “the Republican Obama.”
One Clinton donor, retired college professor Robert Sacks, said he supported Gov. John Kasich, but now compares Trump to—who else?—National Socialist leader Adolf Hitler.
“It’s frightening,” Sacks, who gave Clinton $1,300, complained to the L.A. Times. “To tell you the truth, I begin to get a little feeling of what it was like to be a decent human being in Germany in the early ’30s.”
Other big-money donors are sending cash to Republicans on down-ballot races, some of whom strongly back cheap-labor immigration:
Bobbie Kilberg, a prodigious Republican fundraiser who was a donation bundler for Romney, gave up on this year’s presidential election after watching her favored candidates—New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, then former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, then Florida Sen. Marco Rubio, then Kasich—drop out.
She and her husband, Bill, are raising money for down-ballot races, recently hosting events at their McLean, Va., home for House Speaker Paul D. Ryan, Virginia Rep. Barbara Comstock and North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory…
Trump is far more favored by those who donated to Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, Dr. Ben Carson, former Hewlett-Packard Chief Executive Carly Fiorina and Rubio.
Despite the massive fundraising gap, Trump leads Clinton in some national polls and battleground states, such as the must-win Ohio.