George Soros Misrepresents Political Activities on CNN

Political giving advances his business interests, lacks transparency

February 12, 2012

Left-wing billionaire George Soros told CNN's Fareed Zakaria Sunday that he has funded political causes "on principle not for pursuit of my private interests" and that "I have always done it very openly." Neither claim withstands scrutiny.

Last year, Soros established a green-energy investment fund that, if successful, would generate profits from alternative fuels. Meanwhile, Soros lavishly supports institutions like the Climate Policy Initiative and the Center for American Progress which support public policies that subsidize and promote the very fuels in which the founder of the Soros Fund has a stake.

Moreover, in a 2004 New Yorker profile, Soros explained to left-wing activist Jane Mayer that his support for a British think tank landed him a tip which resulted in "one of the most rewarding weekends of my life" in which he "made many millions."

Nor is it accurate for Soros to say that he has always donated "very openly." Soros is a contributor to numerous 501(c)4 organizations, which are not tax exempt and which do not have to disclose their donors. Soros's support for the liberal fringe group J-Street, for example, was not made public until 2010, after a reporter for the Washington Times obtained the group's form 990.

Transcript below:

ZAKARIA: Will you create a super pac to help president obama?

SOROS: I haven't decided, but I think it's a big, big issue that the Citizens United has really unleashed private money for political purposes that can be used anonymously, and this would create an unequal playing field which would further destroy the political system. I have given minimum money for on principle not for pursuit of my private interests, and I have always done it very openly saying what I'm doing. I will state what I'm deciding, but I'm distressed by the problem that the Citizens United has created.