Hillary Clinton was expected to lead all candidates in contributions from the entertainment industry, drawing on a donor base that includes Reese Witherspoon, Barbra Streisand and Tobey Maguire.
Clinton’s campaign reported raising more than $46 million for the primary, according to its first campaign finance report filed with the Federal Election Commission on Wednesday. That was the deadline for campaigns to file their most recent quarterly reports for the period that ended on June 30.
Her campaign also released a list of campaign bundlers, or those those who have raised more than $100,000 since her campaign launch on April 12.
Media and entertainment figures on the list of bundlers include Comcast executive VP David L. Cohen and his wife Rhonda, Newsweb Corp. chairman Fred Eychaner, Beverly Hills attorney Carol Hamilton, CAA’s Michael Kives, HBO’s Michael Lombardo and his husband Sonny Ward, Haim and Cheryl Saban, and Casey and Laura Wasserman. Also among the bundlers were investor Sim Farar and his wife Debbie, attorney Dana Perlman and Barry Karas, social impact agency co-president Greg Propper, and fundraising consultant David Allen Wolf.
Based on an initial glance at the Clinton campaign finance report, others who gave to Clinton include Magic Johnson, Marcy Carsey, Chris Meledandri, Adam Shankman, Ari Emanuel, Gail Berman, Amy Ziering, Dakota Fanning, and Harvey Weinstein and his wife Georgina Chapman. Each gave the maximum for the primary campaign, $2,700. Also among the donors: Larry Flynt and Craig Newmark. Streisand, a longtime Clinton supporter, contributed $5,400 — $2,700 for the primary and $2,700 for the general election.
According to Bloomberg Politics, CAA ranked among the best places for her to raise, with more than 50 employees donating a total of more than $80,000. They also cited donations from Ben Affleck and Leonardo DiCaprio.
Priorities USA Action, a SuperPAC that is supporting her campaign, is expected to report raising $15.6 million. Dreamworks Animation’s Jeffrey Katzenberg is helping to draw high dollar donors to the independent expenditure group, with Saban reportedly contributing $2 million and others donors including Steven Spielberg and J.J. Abrams and his wife Katie McGrath. Donors to such PACs can make unlimited contributions, but cannot coordinate their spending activities with candidates’ official campaign organization.
Bernie Sanders’ campaign reported raising $15.2 million since he launched his bid for the presidency on April 30, with contributions from actress Deidre Hall, author Jonathan Lethem and, according to the nonpartisan research organization MapLight, writer-director Adam McKay and director Shira Piven.
Clinton and Sanders’ campaigns each tried to emphasize the breadth of their donor base. Clinton’s campaign said that more than 250,000 contributed. Sanders’ campaign said that they received donations from 284,062 individuals.
Fellow Democrat Martin O’Malley, who has also been courting industry donors, reported taking in $2 million in the first month of his campaign. Contributors included Danny DeVito, producer Moctesuma Esparaza, Sony Pictures executive Eric Paquette, Netflix’s Ted Sarandos, Tennis Channel CEO Ken Solomon and producer Sarah Timberman. Some donors have said that they plan to give to multiple Democratic candidates. Solomon, for instance, gave to Clinton and Sanders.
The split between showbiz contributions to Democrats vs. Republicans has been about 75% to 25% in recent cycles, according to the Center for Responsive Politics.
Nevertheless, GOP candidates are still expected to draw on support from the industry as the campaign progresses. Such figures as Carly Fiorina, Ted Cruz, Rand Paul and, last week, Donald Trump have spoken to Friends of Abe, an organization of Hollywood conservatives, although the group does not raise money.
Still, Jeb Bush collected contributions from Legendary Entertainment’s Bruce Rosenblum, former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan, Jenny Craig and writer-producer Mike Murphy, who is running Bush’s Right to Rise SuperPAC.
Bush declared his candidacy on June 15, and his campaign reported raising $11.5 million since then. But Bush spent months before then raising money for his SuperPAC, which has said that it raised a whopping $103 million as of June 30.
Chuck Norris, a supporter of Mike Huckabee in 2008, also gave to Huckabee’s bid this time around.
A. Jerrold Perenchio, a prolific donor to the GOP in recent cycles, gave to Carly Fiorina’s presidential campaign.
So far, Trump’s biggest donor is Trump himself. He reported loaning his campaign $1.8 million, and is expected to self-finance a big bulk of his effort.
Update: Among the other donors to Clinton were Jennifer Garner, Leonardo DiCaprio, Jim Parsons, Eva Longoria, Melanie Griffith Bryan Cranston, Robert Iger, Ron Meyer, Sarah Silverman, Tom Rothman, Ben Affleck, Richard Gere and Alan Horn. David Geffen, once a critic of Clinton’s, gave to her campaign, as well as to the campaign of Sanders.
Reece Ristau contributed to this report.