Mitt Romney's 'Restore Our Future' Super PAC Donors: Own Your Ad
Thanks to the financial floodgates opened by the Supreme Court's decision in the now-infamous Citizens United decision, campaign spending in the 2012 election cycle is projected to reach a record high.
The decision, along with subsequent lower court rulings, enabled creation of so-called super PACs, which are independent campaign groups that are allowed to solicit and spend unlimited amounts of money in support of their preferred candidates or political issues. Independence, however, is a term that is quite loosely enforced in this case; while the super PACs can't officially coordinate strategy with a candidate's campaign, that doesn't mean that candidate's friends, former employees and business partners can't donate and help operate the committee. Nor does it prevent the candidate from asking their friends to chip in.
The Mitt Romney-supporting super PAC, Restore Our Future, is one of the best funded and active groups; thus far, it has spent over $18 million this election cycle. Largely, it has received donations from wealthy interests and former associates of the candidate; it has received 12 separate $1 million donations, including multiple seven figure deposits from employees of Bain Capital, the financial firm Romney founded. Romney, for his part, encouraged the creation of the Super PAC and attended more than one donor event.
In the video above, in order to give them the publicity they deserve, we put their faces to an attack ad that they helped fund.
Ed Conard of Mitt Romney's private equity firm Bain Capital is one of 12 donors who've given at least $1 million to the super PAC Restore Our Future, which supports Romney's bid for the White House. Due to the obliteration of campaign finance law by the Supreme Court, donors can give unlimited amounts to the super PAC. Meet Romney's dozen.
Blake Roney, Nu Skin (Personal Care Products). Gave $1 million as part of a shell corporation.
Steven Lund, Nu Skin. Gave $1 million as part of a shell corporation.
Robert Mercer, left, Renaissance Technologies (Financial)
John Paulson, Paulson & Co. (Financial)
Julian Robertson, Tiger Management (Hedge Fund)
Paul Singer, right, of Elliot Management (Hedge Fund)
Melaleuca and owner Frank VanderSloot (Personal Care)
Paul & Sandra Edgerley
Paul & Sandra Edgerley, Bain Capital
Bob Perry, Perry Homes (Home Builder)
Francis Rooney, Rooney Holdings (Financial)
Oxbow Corp. and William Koch
Oxbow Corp. and owner William Koch (Energy & Technology)