by Brant Clifton
November 1, 2015
We’ve written extensively about this heightened environment of influence-buying in American politics. Over in the Third Congressional District GOP primary, we’ve got a clear example of deep-pocketed influence-peddlers in DC and New York trying to buy a congressional seat.
We took a look at the Griffin campaign’s October 15 quarterly report to the Federal Elections Commission (FEC). Here are some of the interesting things we found:
• Total Receipts – $117,424
• Total from Individuals – $105,424
• Total Itemized from Individuals – $103,300
• Total Contributing (Itemized) – 76 individuals
• Total from PACS – $12,000
• List of donors includes 17 lobbyists, 15 attorneys and 8 financial industry figures
Okay. That’s the big picture. Let’s drill down a little further:
• 67 of 76 (88%) of individual itemized contributors to Griffin were from outside Third District.
• $98,300 of $103,300 (95 percent) individual contributions from outside the Third District.
• Eight donors individually gave more than the entire Third District. (The Third has coughed up $5,000 to Griffin through October 15.) Six of these eight are from New York City. Seven of the eight are involved in the hedge fund industry (Wall Street). Three of the eight are billionaires.
• Donations to Griffin from New York City ($32,400) were SIX TIMES the total donated to the challenger from within the Third District.
• Washington D.C.- based donors gave Griffin ($31,000) more than SIX TIMES times the total amount donated to the challenger from within the Third District.
• Thirteen contributors, all from out of state, gave more than $2,500 to Griffin. Those thirteen people combined for $53,900 — 52 percent of Griffin’s total haul.
The report includes FOUR — count ’em — FOUR billionaires: