Billionaire Hansjörg Wyss, a Swiss national who lives in Wyoming, has become a “Democrat-aligned mega-donor,” according to the Associated Press (AP), thanks to his funneling hundreds of millions of dollars to left-wing groups.
“Newly available tax documents show that his giving through the Berger Action Fund, which describes itself as advocating for ‘solutions to some of our world’s biggest problems,’ swelled in 2021 to $72 million, cementing Wyss’ status as a Democratic-aligned megadonor,” the AP reports.
Wyss, who built his fortune creating the medical device company Synthes USA, which was sold in 2012 to Johnson & Johnson for $20 billion, has routed nearly $340 million through the Berger Action Fund to left-wing organizations like Sixteen Thirty Fund and the New Venture Fund since 2016.
Both groups have worked to build support for President Joe Biden’s agenda.
Specifically, Sixteen Thirty Fund is a left-wing lobbying organization that promotes “equity and racial justice” as well as universal healthcare and climate change legislation. The Sixteen Thirty Fund also shifts money to left-wing political organizations like the scandal-plagued Lincoln Project and the pro-Biden group Unite the Country.
As Politico reported in 2021, the group spent $410 million in the 2020 presidential election to unseat then-President Donald Trump and win Democrats a Senate majority with ad campaigns and a huge get-out-the-vote effort. Since 2016, Wyss has donated $208 million to the Sixteen Thirty Fund.
The Sixteen Thirty Fund’s multi-million dollar grants singlehandedly powered some other organizations on the left, and it also incubated other groups, as a “fiscal sponsor,” that fought against Trump’s Supreme Court nominees, backed liberal ballot measures and policy proposals in different states and organized opposition to Republican tax and health care policies. [Emphasis added]
Its massive 2020 fundraising and spending illustrates the extent to which the left embraced the use of “dark money” to fight for its causes in recent years. After decrying big-money Republican donors over the last decade, as well as the Supreme Court rulings that flooded politics with more cash, Democrats now benefit from hundreds of millions of dollars of undisclosed donations as well. [Emphasis added]
Meanwhile, the New Venture Fund, which has received almost $40 million in donations from Wyss since 2016, centers its nonprofit work around the tenants of Critical Race Theory (CRT) and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI).
“Our vision is an equitable world built on respect, access, opportunity, distributed power, and advancement for all people,” the group’s mission statement reads.
Last year, the New Venture Fund and the Sixteen Thirty Fund bankrolled pro-CRT efforts across the United States to push back against parents of schoolchildren and some educators who object to the race-based theory being practiced in American classrooms.
Fox News reported:
A liberal dark money campaign has quietly formed to push back against anti-Critical Race Theory efforts in K-12 schools across the United States, records reviewed by Fox News Digital show. [Emphasis added]
But while Campaign for Our Shared Future claims it is a grassroots “non-partisan” effort, the group is part of one of the most prominent left-wing dark money networks in the United States. [Emphasis added]
According to Washington, D.C. business records, Campaign for Our Shared Future, the group’s 501(c)(3) educational arm, is fiscally sponsored by the New Venture Fund. Meanwhile, Campaign for Our Shared Future Action Fund, its 501(c)(4) advocacy arm, falls under the Sixteen Thirty Fund. The funds registered the respective groups in early May. [Emphasis added]
Similarly, Wyss has also donated more than $100 million to the Fund for a Better Future group, which calls “diversity, equity, and inclusion” a “moral imperative and essential” to their mission in promoting left-wing causes.
The Fund for a Better Future, in 2021, financed a lobbying campaign to promote Biden’s “Build Back Better” agenda, mainly its green energy initiatives, and spent more than $5 million in last year’s midterm elections to back 30 House Democrats against Republicans.
Wyss has donated millions to CAP as well as the left-wing Priorities USA.
In 2015, Wyss’s central organization — the Wyss Foundation — created the Hub Project specifically “to shape media coverage to help Democratic causes,” according to the New York Times.
“The Hub Project’s activities include organizing paid advertising campaigns that criticized Republican congressional candidates in 2018, as well as a series of marches in 2017 that called on then-President Donald J. Trump to release his tax returns,” the Times reported.
Though he is barred by U.S. election law from donating directly to candidates and political action committees (PACs), Wyss donated almost $120,000 to candidates and PACs from 1990 through 2006, according to the Times. The Federal Election Commission (FEC) never brought formal complaints against Wyss and the statute of limitations has since passed to do so.
John Binder is a reporter for Breitbart News. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter here.