Report: Lobbyists Have Raised $7 Million for Clinton, Nothing for Trump

Hillary Clinton / AP
July 20, 2016

Lobbyists have raised $7 million for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign up to this point, while they have bundled exactly $0 for her opponent Donald Trump’s campaign, indicating the different strategies both candidates have pursued to win the White House.

These figures came from Federal Election Commission reports filed on Friday, according to the Washington Post.

Presidential candidates have counted on lobbyists to raise money for their campaigns over many years, but Trump, now the Republican nominee, has avoided such fundraising methods as he runs as an outsider not confined by traditional political methods practiced in Washington.

Trump’s reluctance to woo lobbyists for campaign contributions has helped win him support among Republican voters but has put him in a financial hole compared to Clinton.

The presumptive Democratic nominee’s $7 million figure is the amount of money that federally registered lobbyists have raised for her campaign from the start of the election cycle in 2015 through June 30. People who raise more than $17,600 from friends, family, and colleagues are called bundlers, the Washington Post notes, and campaigns are obligated to disclose those bundlers who are lobbyists–but not all bundlers.

Lobbyists have also raised $2 million for the Hillary Victory Fund, her campaign’s joint fundraising committee with the Democratic National Committee.

About $2.4 million of Clinton’s $7 million total was bundled by veteran Democratic lobbyists, including some of the country’s most prominent fundraisers who work at large firms across many industries.

Some of these high-profile lobbyists who have raised money for Clinton are, according to the Post:

  • David Jones, who raised $763,000 for the campaign and $116,000 for the Hillary Victory Fund
  • Richard Sullivan, who raised $546,000 for the campaign and $445,000 for the victory fund
  • Heather Podesta, who raised $407,000 for the campaign
  • Steve Elmendorf, who raised $341,000 for the campaign and $73,000 for the victory fund
  • Linda Lipsen, who raised $320,000 for the campaign and $144,000 for the victory fund

Many of these top bundlers work at big firms that have household-name companies as clients–such as Elmendorf, whose lobbying firm Subject Matter boasts clients like Facebook, Goldman Sachs, and Citigroup.

Some of these lobbyists have longtime ties with the Clintons. Jones is on the finance committee for Hillary Clinton’s campaign and held a similar position on Bill Clinton’s 1996 presidential campaign. Sullivan is a former national fundraising director of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and served as the national finance director for the DNC under President Clinton.

Another lobbyist who has raised large sums of cash for Clinton is Tony Podesta, the brother of John Podesta, Clinton’s campaign chairman. He works for Podesta Group and has raised $268,000 for the Clinton campaign and $31,000 for the victory fund.