Adelson delivered! Now it’s Trump’s turn

US Politics
on 20 Comments

However dubious big Republican supporters of Israel felt about Donald Trump, in the last weeks of the election campaign many of them gave a lot of money to the Republican Party; and Sheldon Adelson and his wife gave $10 million to a pro-Trump PAC.

In September, Adelson and his wife Miriam gave $10 million to Future45, a pac led by the founder of TD Ameritrade that directly helped Trump during the campaign. The Adelson contribution was the lion’s share of Future45’s revenues of $13 million.

Sheldon and Miriam Adelson gave another $15 million to a Republican Senate campaign superpac on October 24, its largest donation. An “astonishing” surge of funding to the Senate Leadership superpac in the weeks before the election included many contributions from Israel supporters:

Israel is the only issue for the casino magnate Adelson and his wife. In 2013, he called on President Obama to nuke Iran. The last time he gave a lot of money to a winning horse, the horse in question, George W. Bush, stocked his administration with neoconservatives, and we all remember how that turned out.

Two other Israel supporters also contributed to the 2016 Senate leadership superpac:

Billionaire Blackstone CEO Steve Schwarzman contributed $2.2 million on Oct. 25, while hedge fund manager Paul Singer of Elliott Management chipped in $2 million a day later.

Schwarzman, who has been less active as a donor than Adelson or Singer, will head a forum that will advise Trump on business policy.

Schwarzman is a supporter of the American Jewish Committee, a pro-Israel group; and took part in an Israeli presidential conference in 2013.

Singer is a big supporter of the neoconservative Israel Project, as well as of gay rights groups. CNBC points out that Singer has now flipflopped on Trump:

Singer, who once said Trump’s policies would lead to a global depression, has warmed to him more since his election. He attended a fundraising breakfast for Trump this week and plans to donate to his inauguration.

Sam Fox of the Republican Jewish Coalition, a big backer of Israel, gave a total of $500,000 to the Senate superpac.

It’s often noted that pro-Israel groups like to support candidates across the spectrum so that no one in national office doesn’t feel obligated to them. Tom Friedman has said that the Congress is “bought and paid for” by the Israel lobby. That pattern held this year.

As for the Future45 presidential superpac, other leading rightwing Jewish supporters of Israel gave to it too, but in 2015, according to federal filings, evidently before it had aligned with Trump. Singer gave $250,000; Roger Hertog of the neoconservative Manhattan Institute gave $50,000; Ron Weiser, who is on the board of the pro-Israel Republican Jewish Coalition, gave $100,000.

A month after Adelson’s gift to the superpac, Trump had a rally at a Las Vegas Adelson hotel on October 30, in which he praised Adelson. Fox:

“I’d like to thank the owner of this great hotel, and his incredible wife – she’s an incredible woman – Sheldon Adelson,” Trump said to cheers. “Really incredible people and they’ve been so supportive and we appreciate it.”

Trump has many rightwing supporters of Israel in his circle, including strategist and Islamophobe Steve Bannon, son-in-law Jared Kushner (who fired me over this blog at the New York Observer in 2007), and foreign policy adviser David Friedman.

This election has divided Jews publicly. Many Israeli Jews are embracing Trump. But about 75 percent of American Jews voted for Hillary Clinton in November. “They aren’t just against Trump, they are adamantly opposed to this man, the way he ran his campaign and the values he ran on,” Jeremy Ben-Ami of J Street said last week.

A symptom of the division is Jennifer Rubin of the Washington Post, who is feverishly pro-Israel and anti-Trump. She has called on evangelical Christians to “atone” for supporting Donald Trump. What would she tell his Jewish supporters to do?

Thanks to Yakov Hirsch and James North. 

About Philip Weiss

Philip Weiss is Founder and Co-Editor of Mondoweiss.net.

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20 Responses

  1. HarryLaw
    December 9, 2016, 3:33 pm

    Strange that the US criticize the Iranian election process whereby the Guardian Council have to approve all candidates for election. In the US unless you can raise millions, usually through individual billionaires with agendas, you can forget it. America truly has the best electoral system, that money can buy.

  2. michelle
    December 9, 2016, 8:38 pm

    .
    seems like Israel/Israel supporters paid both candids
    odds are great that more was paid to HC
    by that measure alone Trump ‘owes’ nothing as POTUS
    .
    be nice if this POTUS isn’t for sale
    .
    G-dBless
    .

  3. zaid
    December 9, 2016, 8:44 pm

    If you add up all the contributions you wont even reach 30 million!

    That is a very cheap price to buy the American foreign policy.

  4. Annie Robbins
    December 9, 2016, 10:51 pm

    son-in-law Jared Kushner (who fired me over this blog at the New York Observer in 2007)

    ha! love it. so he’s probably well aware of mondoweiss.

    all that money pumped into the gop pales in comparison to the billions the american taxpayer shovels into israel. trump is a businessman, so what’s he gonna ask in return? anything? he must sense he has some leverage and it’s his nature to want to be on top. so what’s he gonna ask for? something tells me he’ll ask for something — so what will it be?

    meanwhile jared’s father has dumped tons into settlements and the idf. strange toxic cocktail going on here. i wonder what the dynamics are between the 2 father-in-laws. trump probably has to dominate in that department too. all very intriguing.

    and of course there was that side show w/chis christie and the transistion team. was he just called forth to be ceremoniously dumped? for show? after how he screwed jared’s dad over. obviously trump already knew about that prior to trump winning. the prison sentence, christie, and everything. so what was the point of christie being like the very first name on the transition team list only to be fired as soon as the son showed up at the WH? obvious enough? my hunch is was to just shame him or something. it’s got a tad of a mafioso family style dagger thing about it. and of course christie’s political future is down the tubes from here on out. i think that was trump throwing his son-in-law and son-in-law’s father a big fat juicy bone straight out of the gate. this is likely how trump plays. personal. so what’s the implication for adelson and israel. 20-30 mil is peanuts to 3.8 billion a year. do you think trump will let that completely slide? i don’t. he’ll ask for something. what he will ask for — i have no idea.

    • Citizen
      December 9, 2016, 11:41 pm

      Maybe, the question is, what else will Ivanka ask her dad for?

      • MHughes976
        December 10, 2016, 11:26 am

        I read somewhere that Mr. Kushner may be put in charge of what is called ME peace.

      • Annie Robbins
        December 10, 2016, 11:44 am

        i read that too. ambassador/envoy to israel or something.

    • David Doppler
      December 11, 2016, 2:36 pm

      Great set of connections, Phil & Annie, not being closely examined elsewhere that I saw.

      What will he ask for, Annie? That’s a great question. He hinted early that he might be able to make a deal in the Middle East, because he’s such an awesomely better dealmaker, not afraid to say to the assembled Jewish donors he knew he would be on the short end of their fundraising, because he understood they wanted someone they could control, he understood and respected that, and he wasn’t that guy. “Lot of dealmakers in this room,” he said. I think he was throwing down the challenge – “you’ve never had to deal with me.”

      He wants to make a deal for lasting peace. He wants to eliminate ISIS. He should want to tamp down the sources of jihad – he hasn’t articulated that (instead he’s made of himself a source of Muslim unrest), but some of his generals have clearly articulated it, few better than Mattis. With the generals and admirals, he wants for the US to be strong and unpredictable when it commits its troops, no longer hamstrung by weak and indecisive political leadership, unwise strategy. He wants to weaken Iran. He wants better relations with Russia. He wants better deals from all of the US’s “retainer nations.”

      He should also want his CIA and Israel’s Mossad working toward common goals under guidance from him and whoever he cuts a deal with in Israel [why Lapid’s call for elections, and for “building a wall,” all of a sudden? Why the Chief Rabbis promising reform of how they treat American women who convert to Judaism in the US, all of a sudden, if not Trump starting to flex his muscles?]. We keep reading that the CIA has been arming jihadi groups, that Mossad has been providing them material support, in Syria at least, that the CIA was involved in shipping arms from Libya to Syria, etc., etc. That CIA-backed fighters were fighting DOD backed fighters.

      Today’s anonymously-sourced CIA’s MSM-reported “consensus” that Russia hacked our election to help Trump, immediately countered by Trump himself, suggests that there’s already a great deal of tension there, and that some in the CIA side with the elite establishment in trying to derail Trump (the hack of the RNC at the time in question surely wouldn’t have hurt Trump, if released, because at the time in question the RNC was opposed to Trump).

      I suspect Trump will want a lot. And that it will largely be unpredictable. And it will be different. If it succeeds in putting America’s realistic interests first, then I’m supportive of a change in direction.

      • Mooser
        December 11, 2016, 3:07 pm

        “I suspect Trump will want a lot. And that it will largely be unpredictable. And it will be different. If it succeeds in putting America’s realistic interests first, then I’m supportive of a change in direction.”

        And if Donald Trump’s entire life hadn’t been one of selflessly putting “America’s realistic interests first” I might be a little nervous about it. But given his record, I’m sanguine. Wouldn’t be surprised if we weren’t all a bit exsanguinated before he’s over.

  5. Ossinev
    December 10, 2016, 12:11 pm

    It is always worth listening to what morons like Adelson actually say without blinking an eyelid:
    A reminder of his all time great performance:
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6sCW4IasWXc

    Frightening to think that Israel First cretins such as these who don`t actually give a monkey`s F..K about America or the health , well being and security of its citizens can on the face of it have so much influence on US politics and US foreign and Defence policy.

    It makes one think whether the majority of Americans recognise or understand the concept of “Fifth Column”

  6. Misterioso
    December 10, 2016, 12:25 pm

    Food for thought:
    While huge Zionist funding certainly played a key role, it was votes on the ground that gave Trump his victory and most of these voters are not enamoured of Israel. Indeed, their steadily deteriorating economic situation and living conditions over the past few decades have caused them to resent the massive US taxpayer aid Israel has been provided since 1949. Their anger has been exacerbated by Obama’s recent commitment to give Israel 38.5 $billion over the next ten years.

    Given the steady rise of the extreme right in America, an inevitable collision between Zionists and America’s “common folk” is inevitable and where Trump will stand should be obvious.

    • JWalters
      December 10, 2016, 7:36 pm

      I think this makes a lot of sense as an overview. The details add confusing wrinkles however. The “common folk” includes the Evangelical Christians, many of whom have been duped along with the Zionist Jews by the financial elite / oligarchy into supporting their wars. Another group of the common folk is more aware of the financial elite’s manipulations. These include the vets, who are increasingly becoming aware of the war racket and its cost to them and their families and country.

      Now the oligarchy appears to be getting nervous about this increasing awareness. So the oligarchy’s media (NYT, WaPo, etc) is hitting harder in attempts to shut down disagreeing voices. Recently WaPo fronted for a witchhunt list of websites that included some sites MORE honest than their NYT, etc.
      http://www.commondreams.org/views/2016/12/05/media-complicity-key-blacklisting-websites

      More recently they are pushing the idea that the Russians stole the election for Trump,
      http://www.commondreams.org/news/2016/12/10/cia-concludes-russia-meddled-us-election-provides-no-evidence

      while in reality there is MUCH more evidence of Israeli control of America’s elections. e.g.
      http://mondoweiss.net/2016/08/about-russian-influence/

      There is also evidence that the Israelis have been trying to create a conflict between the U.S. and Russia to prevent cooperation in tamping down Middle East conflicts.
      http://consortiumnews.com/2014/03/02/what-neocons-want-from-ukraine-crisis/

      Contrary to its public statements, Israel benefits from continued conflict because it provides a cover for stealing more Palestinian land, and benefits its weapons industry. Some background history for readers who haven’t seen it yet, “War Profiteers and the Roots of the War on Terror”.

      • Misterioso
        December 10, 2016, 9:57 pm

        Good comment.

  7. Misterioso
    December 10, 2016, 6:36 pm

    Just released:

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/john-bolton-trump-state-department_us_584c6b3be4b0e05aded43d0e

    Trump to appoint John Bolton as State Department’s number 2.

  8. Maghlawatan
    December 10, 2016, 7:37 pm

    Shadi Hamid ‏@shadihamid 27 min

    Shadi Hamid retweeted Shaun King
    In other news, former congressman @AllenWest supports the “extermination” of Muslims

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