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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, April 18 2014 - Volume 42 Issue 16
Pro-Gay Republican super PAC raises $2.75 million
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Pro-Gay Republican super PAC raises $2.75 million

by Mike Andrew - SGN Staff Writer

A super PAC that supports Republican candidates in favor of marriage equality has reported a whopping $2.75 million in fundraising for the first quarter of 2014.

American Unity PAC has been in existence since the 2012 election, but only raised some $2.75 million for the whole year and did relatively little funding of campaigns. In the off year 2013 cycle, it raised only $260,000.

'American Unity PAC is the voice of Republican voters who are committed to equal rights and full relationship recognition for gay and lesbian Americans,' the group says on its website.

'We are committed to the values of freedom - limited government, free enterprise, individual liberty, personal responsibility, a strong national defense and the importance of family. In the spirit of these values, we believe the promise of America should be extended to all, regardless of their orientation.'

So-called 'super PACs' may not make contributions to candidate campaigns or parties or coordinate with them, but may engage in unlimited political spending independently of the campaigns. Unlike traditional PACs, they can raise funds from individuals, corporations, unions, and other groups without any legal limit on donation size.

The majority of American Unity's total contributions, $1.75 million, came from a single individual - hedge fund manager Paul Singer.

Described by Fortune magazine as 'a passionate defender of the 1% and a rising Republican power broker,' Singer has contributed to Gay rights groups, but also to the George W. Bush and Mitt Romney campaigns, and to the Koch Brothers-backed Club for Growth.

About $1 million more came to the super PAC from billionaire derivatives investor Seth Klarman. Klarman also contributes to the American Jewish Committee and pro-Israeli political groups.

Only one other person contributed more than $25 to the super PAC.

Gay Republicans are running in two high-profile Congressional races this year. Richard Tisei is running for the same Massachusetts seat he narrowly lost in 2012, and Dan Innis is running in a Republican congressional primary in New Hampshire.

Gay Republican Carl DeMaio is also running for mayor of San Diego.

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