The incoming U.S. president really isn’t that scary, not even to Hillary Clinton donors in Silicon Valley.
Now that the election is over, President-elect Donald J. Trump will hold a technology summit at his base of operations, Trump Tower in New York City, on Wednesday with a group of Silicon Valley industry leaders. But most of them funded his presidential campaign opponent Democrat Hillary Clinton and her fellow Democrats to the tune of millions of dollars while avoiding giving to Trump’s campaign and to Republicans generally. According to a Breitbart News analysis, the tech and telecommunications giants donated millions more to Clinton and Democrats than they did to Trump and Republicans—which means that whatever clout they would have had under a never-to-be Clinton administration is probably significantly diminished under the incoming Trump administration.
The CEOs and top executives attending the meeting according to a report in Recode include: Google’s Larry Page, Apple’s Tim Cook, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, Microsoft’s Satya Nadella, and more. According to the Recode report, Facebook investor and PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel is intricately involved in helping organize the meeting of the minds.
In the case of Google, Apple, Facebook and Microsoft, those companies poured millions into backing Clinton—and barely anything into backing Trump.
According to data compiled by the Center for Responsive Politics, employees from Alphabet Inc.—which runs Google—gave $1,315,545 to Hillary Clinton’s campaign while only donating $21,924 to Trump. To the Hillary Victory Fund, Google employees gave $571,327.52 according to Federal Election Commission (FEC) data—while only donating $1,000 to Trump Victory. The Center for Responsive Politics shows that Google employees gave $260,781 to the Democratic National Committee, but only $1,800 to the Republican National Committee. The pro-Hillary Clinton Super PAC Priorities USA got $10,000 from Google employees while a pro-Trump Super PAC, the Trump Make America Great Again Committee got just $1,854 from Google employees. Google donated $500,000 to both the Republican and Democratic National Conventions’ host committees.
Apple, which is sending Steve Jobs’ successor Tim Cook to the meeting with the president-elect, saw employees give $572,350 to Clinton’s campaign, $147,195 to the DNC and $1,090,228.99 to the Hillary Victory Fund. Cook himself gave the maximum $2,700 to Clinton’s campaign and gave $236,100 total to the Hillary Victory Fund. By contrast, Apple employees only gave $4,366 to Trump’s campaign and just $500 to the RNC. No Apple employees, as far as what’s available in reported FEC filings, appear to have given to Trump Victory.
Facebook employees gave $418,964 to Clinton’s campaign, $91,517 to the DNC, and a whopping $541,132.14 to the Hillary Victory Fund. Sandberg, who will be at the meeting with Trump on Wednesday representing Facebook, personally gave $416,100 of that to the Hillary Victory Fund. By comparison, Facebook employees only gave $3,965 to Trump’s campaign and don’t appear to have spent on the RNC or Trump Victory. But Facebook did give both to the Cleveland 2016 Host Committee and the Philadelphia 2016 Host Committee, but gave more to the Democratic convention in Philadelphia than the GOP one in Cleveland. To the Democrats, Facebook gave $1,450,000 and to the Republicans it gave $1,000,000.
Microsoft employees gave $710,334 to Hillary Clinton’s campaign, $399,380 to the DNC, and $405,615.22 to the Hillary Victory Fund. To the Trump campaign by comparison, Microsoft employees gave just $31,372, just $70,342 to the RNC, and just $5,923 to the pro-Trump Super PAC the Trump Make America Great Again Committee. Microsoft does appear to have given more to Republicans in terms of the conventions, as it gave $1.8 million in in-kind contributions to the GOP convention’s host committee in Cleveland but gave $650,000 in cash to the Democrats’ host committee in Philadelphia. PAC spending from Microsoft as an organization also includes $45,000 to the RNC from the company’s PAC arm.
Amazon, whose CEO Jeff Bezos is “likely” to attend the meeting per the Recode report, saw its employees give $330,895 to Clinton’s campaign while donating just $3,112 to Trump’s campaign. Bezos also now owns the Washington Post, the biggest newspaper in the nation’s capital Washington, D.C., which faced enormous criticism for its pro-Clinton anti-Trump media coverage of the 2016 election.
Cisco Systems, which is also sending its CEO Chuck Robbins, saw employees give $157,427 to Clinton’s campaign and just $13,662 to Trump’s campaign. Intel, whose CEO Brian Krzanich Rometty is attending the meeting with Trump, saw its employees give $146,444 to Hillary Clinton’s campaign and just $11,862 to Trump’s campaign.
Oracle, whose CEO Safra Catz will be at the meeting too, saw its workers give $178,444 to Clinton’s campaign and just $12,880 to Trump’s campaign. Despite the fact his company was funding Clinton way more than Trump, Catz issued a statement to Recode saying he and his team are “with” the president-elect.
“I plan to tell the president-elect that we are with him and will help in any way we can,” Catz told Recode. “If he can reform the tax code, reduce regulation and negotiate better trade deals, the U.S. technology industry will be stronger and more competitive than ever.”
Maybe that’s right, that Trump can be better than anyone in the tech field—because he owes none of these people anything, really. Or anyone else for that matter. He’s free to dream big and pursue what he thinks is best, with no strings attached to any donors seeking favors or anyone needing or wanting anything. Which is why Bill Gates, the founder of Microsoft who met with Trump on Tuesday, compared him to John F. Kennedy—the late idealistic former Democratic president.