The Top 10 Conservative Moguls Who Control Your Life
12:34 pm, April 25th | by
President Obama has
Mark Zuckerberg, Warren Buffett and Steve Jobs — so who are the Republicans’ friends? Yes, they do have some. For the country’s wealthiest and most influential, partisan politics can make the claws — and the checkbooks — come out. Luckily for the GOP, right-wing partisans have more than a few billionaire defenders, each willing to shell out big bucks to see his or her side win. With that in mind, we’ve ranked the top 10 moguls most likely to release the hounds on some hippie Democrats.
1.The Walton Family
The Walton Family - The family that inherited Wal-Mart has more than enough wealth and power to throw behind conservative causes -- and stands to benefit from political conservatism perhaps more than anyone else on this list. With close to $90 billion split up among them, they've given millions to conservative causes and the Republican party. Take that, Rockefeller!
2.The Koch Brothers
David and Charles Koch - As far as these energy tycoons are concerned, the less government around to rein them in, the better. Subsequently, they're often heard voicing their criticism of the Obama administration -- that is, when they're not facing accusations of bankrolling the Tea Party. The Koch brothers had egg on their faces earlier this year, after a reporter pretending to be David Koch fooled Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker in a prank phone call. Their conversations, which included a promise to "fly [Walker] out to Cali and really show [him] a good time," among other things. It was, in a word, embarrassing.
Rupert Murdoch - Murdoch was responsible for donating $1 million of NewsCorp's money to the Republican Governors' Association last year -- a somewhat unusual move for a a news organization, for obvious reasons. Murdoch's NewsCorp owns the notably conservative Fox News, as well as the Wall Street Journal, which many argue has taken an increasingly conservative bent since Murdoch became its publisher in 2007. Or maybe it's all in our heads?
4.T. Boone Pickens
T. Boone Pickens - The Texan corporate raider and head of BP Capital Management has given over $5 million to Republicans and conservative political causes over the past 30 years. Pickens was a major donor to George W. Bush's campaign, and was on the front line (no pun intended -- okay, sorta) of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth campaign in 2004, which was critical of then-presidential-candidate John Kerry's military record.
Stephen Schwarzman - The co-founder of private equity giant BlackRock was a buddy of George W. Bush during their days at Yale, where they were fellow Skull and Bones members. He's stayed close with his college pal, and donated generously to Bush's campaign -- and to many other Republican campaigns too. Rumors once swirled that Schwarzman had his eye on a seat in Bush's cabinet, but the dream was never realized.
Donald Trump - In the unlikely event that you haven't yet heard, Donald Trump kinda sorta maybe wants to run for president. As a Republican. He will scream it in your ear for you, if you'd like, but first he has to get back to convincing people that Obama wasn't born in the U.S.
Meg Whitman - The former CEO of eBay threw $178 million of her own cash into her 2010 bid for California governor, the most any individual has ever spent on his or her own campaign. It was an unusual move for someone who reportedly didn't register to vote until 2002.
Sheldon Adelson - The Las Vegas tycoon has gambled lots of cash on Republican causes -- for better or for worse. In addition to championing free-market capitalism, Adelson was a key supporter of one of the biggest gambles in U.S. history: the war in Iraq. No word on whether he's hedging that bet.
Phil Anschutz - An avowed Christian conservative, Anschutz was a keep lieutenant in the republican force during the second Bush administration. The jack-of-all trades businessman gave money to support anti-evolution/pro-intelligent design research and also owns a right-wing opinion magazine. His hobbies include financing movies with Christian themes and working to overturn anti-discrimination legislation.
Richard DeVos - DeVos, the founder of Amway, previously acted as the president of the Council for National Policy, a coven of some of the most powerful conservatives in the U.S. His son ran, unsuccessfully, as the Republican candidate for Michigan governor in 2006.