During the 2016 presidential primary cycle, influential Republican donors attempted to curtail Donald Trump’s ascent to the nomination by funding other GOP candidates, but their efforts proved futile. Trump not only secured the Republican nomination but also claimed a historic victory against Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
In the current election cycle, these big-money donors initially directed some funds toward Trump’s primary challengers, albeit not at the same level as before. However, as they witness Trump’s stronghold on the 2024 GOP nomination, their financial support for his opponents has diminished.
‘It’s becoming clear the cavalry’s not coming,’ expressed Ken Spain, a longtime GOP strategist and advisor to business interests in Washington.
The donor community acknowledges Trump’s strength and the challenge of swaying a significant portion of his support base. Ken Spain further stated, ‘You’re tilting at windmills if you try’ to dislodge him. Rob Collins, co-chair of a super PAC supporting South Carolina Sen. Tim Scott, explained in a memo to donors that scaling back advertising would be a sensible business move due to the locked-in nature of this particular electorate.
Given the polls, Trump has emerged as a fundraising powerhouse, predominantly supported by small donors. According to The Wall Street Journal, his campaign raised approximately $25 million between July 1 and September 30, surpassing his closest competitor’s $11 million fundraising during the same period.
While individual donors can only contribute up to $3,300 during the primaries, wealthy contributors have the option to invest millions in super PACs aligned with specific candidates.
An anonymous source connected to financial industry donors mentioned to The Wall Street Journal that prominent Republican contributions would likely focus on reclaiming control of the U.S. Senate rather than the presidential race. Another source stated that although large GOP donors are displeased with Trump’s success, they have come to terms with his expected nomination as the party’s candidate.
However, not all significant GOP donors remain passive bystanders. Wisconsin-based shipping mogul Richard Hihlein and his wife Elizabeth, one of the party’s most generous supporters, donated $2 million to a super PAC associated with Ron DeSantis earlier this year.
‘Billionaire Oracle co-founder Larry Ellison has expressed his full support for a Scott campaign, contributing $30 million to a Scott super PAC ahead of the midterm elections.
Furthermore, entrepreneur Robert Bigelow, known for his Las Vegas hotel and aerospace ventures, donated $20 million in March to DeSantis’s super PAC,’ revealed The Wall Street Journal.
Some major GOP contributors, including Paul Singer’s network and the billionaire Koch family, may unite behind the top-performing candidate in Iowa and allocate millions of dollars to their campaign throughout the Super Tuesday primaries.
Nonetheless, The Wall Street Journal reported that such a scenario is unlikely and probably ineffective. Trump not only leads the GOP pack but is also gaining ground on President Joe Biden, surpassing him in numerous surveys.
Recent polls indicate a potential ‘electoral landslide’ for Trump in the upcoming year, as President Biden’s approval ratings decline and the impact of ‘Bidenomics’ is felt in ordinary Americans’ paychecks.
In an interview with radio host Michael Patrick Leahy for The Tennessee Star report, esteemed pollster John McLaughlin discussed the significance of current state and national polling, highlighted crucial polls to observe, and outlined an approach for analyzing new polling as it emerges. He suggests that Trump may be heading for a substantial win over Biden in the next election.