Soros Steers Last-Minute Cash to Boost Black, Latino Turnout in Battleground States

George Soros / Getty Images
October 23, 2020

Liberal billionaire George Soros is pumping last-minute cash into efforts to boost black and Latino turnout in battleground states.

New Federal Election Commission records released Thursday show that Soros's Democracy PAC gave $500,000 apiece to both the Black PAC and the Somos PAC, which work to mobilize black and Latino voters, respectively. Last month, the financier also funneled millions to electoral efforts in Pennsylvania and Michigan via the Strategic Victory Fund, a super PAC linked to his Democracy Alliance donor network.

The cash adds to the $70 million that Soros has already poured into the 2020 elections, an amount that is triple what he had spent on the 2016 elections, his previous high. It also puts his spending in line with fellow billionaires, such as Michael Bloomberg, who are injecting last-minute cash into Florida and other swing states to boost Democrats in the home stretch of the elections.

The Somos PAC describes itself as the "first progressive, centralized hub for research, messaging, training, and mobilization" for Latinos in critical battleground states. Its newest financial filings, also released Thursday, show that Soros's Democracy PAC and Bloomberg's Florida Freedom PAC are among its biggest donors. The Somos PAC has spent millions on voter outreach benefiting Biden, Senate candidate Mark Kelly in Arizona, and Rep. Debbie Mucarsel-Powell (D.) in Florida's 26th Congressional District.

The Black PAC is focused on black voter turnout and has spent millions backing Biden, Sen. Gary Peters (D.) in Michigan, Cal Cunningham in North Carolina, and Reps. Lucy McBath (D.) in Georgia and Elaine Luria (D.) in Virginia, among others, according to filings. Soros's latest contribution to the PAC comes on the heels of the $1 million in funding he sent the group in late July. The financier has also given hefty amounts to the Nuestro PAC, Latino Victory Fund, United We Dream, Black Men Vote, and Color of Change, all of which work to mobilize minority voters.

In addition, Soros recently pushed $3 million into the Strategic Victory Fund, a super PAC tied to the Democracy Alliance, a network of wealthy progressives who mapped out a $275 million spending spree for the 2020 elections. The Strategic Victory Fund, in turn, has funneled cash to Millions of Michiganians, created this cycle to back Biden and Sen. Peters in Michigan, as well as to Pennsylvania Alliance Action and ProgressNow Arizona. The Democracy Alliance founded the fund as a way of pushing dark money into anti-Trump electoral efforts. Dozens of liberal groups—including the Chuck Schumer-affiliated Senate Majority PAC and the Nancy Pelosi-affiliated House Majority PAC—have received hefty sums from the billionaire.

Prior to the 2020 elections, Soros gave directly to candidates and committees. This cycle, however, he created the Democracy PAC, which has been funded by tens of millions of dollars from the Fund for Policy Reform, a nonprofit with $3 billion in assets in Soros's Open Society Foundations network. Since most of the Democracy PAC's money is transferred over from his nonprofit—and not in his own name—Soros does not appear atop donor lists, despite his massive contributions.

The $70 million in election cash is just a small portion of the total money Soros spends on progressive causes. Most of that cash comes from his Open Society Foundations, which has spent hundreds of millions on progressive groups and infrastructure in recent years. The groups who receive the funding often run anti-Republican campaigns and protests, engage in liberal advocacy efforts, and work to increase registered voters.

Soros's spokesperson did not respond to a request for comment.