LOS ANGELES, CA — Billionaire casino mogul Sheldon Adelson, one of the most prominent contributors to Republican candidates in recent elections, will host a fundraiser for Elan Carr in Los Angeles on May 29 in his race to succeed Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA).
Carr is one of three Republicans among the 18 candidates–including ten Democrats–that will appear on the June 3 open primary ballot for the 33rd congressional district, which includes Hollywood.
Adelson is best known for his large contributions to presidential “super PACs,” but has occasionally supported congressional candidates in the past, including Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, who was the Republican nominee in New Jersey’s 9th congressional district in 2012.
Adelson’s intervention in the race to replace Waxman just four days before the primary is a sign of confidence in Carr’s prospect of finishing first or second and advancing to the general election.
Carr has polled well, according to the limited data available. An internal poll released by Democrat Wendy Gruel in February showed Carr in third, with 19 percent. In April, an internal poll by the Carr campaign showed him to be in a “statistic[al] dead heat” with Gruel and State Sen. Ted Lieu (D).
Others, including as independent Marianne Williamson and Democrats David Kanuth and Matt Miller, have raised large campaign war chests.
Adelson’s fundraising–on top of earlier contributions–will help Carr, but could also provide fodder for his opponents.
In 2012, the Obama campaign sent an email attacking vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan for “making a pilgrimage to the Sands’ Venetian casino in Las Vegas to kiss the ring of Sheldon Adelson.” Hostility to “big money in politics” is a dominant theme in many of the 33rd district campaigns.