Casino magnate and conservative philanthropist Sheldon Adelson has threatened the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee with a lawsuit over false statements made by the Committee claiming Adelson “personally approved of prostitution and knew of other improper activity at his company’s properties in the Chinese enclave of Macau, China.”
Even the predictably left-wing Politifact website judged the claim “pants on fire” false in a report earlier this month.
Adelson has become a target of Democratic attacks as the Obama campaign and its allies seek to demonize conservative donors for their support of political groups.
Media outlets aligned with the Obama campaign such as ProPublica have also leveled charges that Adelson’s fortune was ill-gotten. ProPublica is a non-profit funded by Democratic mega-donors Herb and Marion Sandler, who committed $10 million a year to the project from their own personal fortune acquired through the sale of a bank that was a trailblazer in the kind of adjustable rate mortgages (ARMs) that led to the 2008 global financial crisis.
Time magazine named the Sandlers to their list of “25 People to Blame for the Financial Crisis.”
According to Open Secrets, Herb and Marion Sandler contributed more to outside spending groups than any other individuals in the 2004 cycle, with contributions totaling more than $11 million.
Adelson’s business dealings in China have been the focus of media attention following his series of announcements of large contributions to Republican Super PACs. Adelson is under investigation by the SEC for violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act in relation to his business dealings in Macau.
However, Adelson is not the only donor to have run afoul of the SEC. Democratic mega-donor Jeffrey Katzenberg, the largest single donor to the pro-Obama Super PAC Priorities USA at $2 million and a major bundler for the Obama campaign, is also under SEC investigation. Katzenberg signed a $2 billion deal to expand his Dreamworks studio into China with considerable help from the Obama White House.
The nonpartisan Sunlight Foundation asked Dreamworks if “Katzenberg’s support for Obama fast-track[ed his] movie deal with China?” A spokesman for Dreamworks declined comment. Katzenberg has donated $89,100 to the DCCC in the last three cycles. It is unknown whether the DCCC will return the money for fear that Chinese prostitutes have fueled Katzenberg’s fortune buying tickets to “Kung Fu Panda 2.”