Billionaire hedge fund manager Paul Singer, emulating the Koch brothers, is creating another right-wing fundraising outlet to back Republican politicians. Politico reports today that Singer’s fundraising network, the American Opportunity Alliance, will “bring together some of the richest pro-business GOP donors in the country, several of whom share Singer’s support for gay rights, immigration reform and the state of Israel.”
While noting that Singer, whose son is gay, is trying to aid Republican politicians who support immigration reform and LGBT equality, Politico points out that many of the candidates he supports “have not necessarily signed on to Singer’s broad agenda,” and that Singer “has been supportive of the Club for Growth, the hard-right organization of economic conservatives, giving the group more than $850,000 over the years, including a $100,000 check last cycle.”
In the 2012 election, many of Club for Growth’s top recipients were among the GOP’s most vocal opponents of gay rights and immigration legislation.
Club for Growth spent over $5.5 million on behalf of Ted Cruz in his upset victory in the Texas GOP primary, catapulting the nihilistic, Tea Party crusader into the U.S. Senate. Several House Republicans blamed Cruz for sinking immigration reform legislation, and he is now championing anti-gay legislation and spouting off harsh denunciations of gay rights.
The group is also a major supporter of Rep. Steve King (R-IA), the point man for the anti-immigrant movement, best known for his comments about how undocumented young people are drug traffickers with “calves the size of cantaloupes” and his comparison of immigration to terrorism and the Holocaust.
King also has a horrendous record on gay rights: He claimed same-sex marriage would take children away from their parents and force them to be “raised in warehouses”; likened gay people to unicorns and leprechauns; warned gay marriage would lead to socialism and called on gay people to stay in the closet.
The Club for Growth also is also a major cheerleader for Georgia congressman and Senate candidate Paul Broun, who believes that immigration reform is part of a ploy to doom America and “destroy our Constitution.” Broun also introduced a constitutional amendment banning same-sex marriage and said “he opposes health insurance covering sex-change or hair-transplant procedures because he personally likes ‘being a boy.’”
One former Republican congressman told the conservative Washington Times that the Club’s “priority is to invariably go with any conservative, anti-gay, pro-life Republican they can find” and “endorse how the Christian coalition groups do.” The group also steered money to a leading anti-gay group.
Singer is also tied to the Koch brothers’ fundraising network, which has donated handsomely to anti-gay candidates and groups such as Concerned Women for America, which even defends the Ugandan anti-gay law.
It is hard to reconcile Singer’s personal support for gay rights and immigration reform with his sizeable financial support for candidates who oppose equal rights for gays and lesbians and reform efforts.
Singer’s strong backing of not only organizations like the Club for Growth but also the House GOP leadership — which refuses to even allow House members to vote on immigration reform measures or gay rights bills such as the Employment Non-Discrimination Act (ENDA) — shows that Singer seems perfectly comfortable with propping up politicians who are working against the causes of LGBT equality and immigrant rights as long as they advance his “hardcore conservative” economic agenda.