Thomas Fahr “Tom” Steyer is an American hedge fund manager and philanthropist who is among the world’s wealthiest and largest supporters of radical environmental groups, left-wing causes, and Democratic candidates. Steyer built his multi-billion-dollar fortune by investing and promoting the coal industry, which has attracted criticism from even left-wing environmental groups.
Steyer was implicated, though never indicted, in an influence-peddling scandal that resulted in the resignation of Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber in 2015. Steyer is also one of the few Americans directly exposed in the 2016 Panama Papers scandal, the leaking of 11.5 million documents that illustrate how wealthy individuals keep personal financial information private and engage in fraud and political corruption.
A big bundler of campaign funds for Democratic candidates – including Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton – Steyer is the biggest individual donor to Democratic candidates and outside groups that supported Democrats in the 2016 election cycle.
In July 2016, the Energy & Environment Legal Institute, a non-profit watchdog group, released a report titled “Buying the Democrat Party Lock, Stock and Barrel,” which details how Steyer “is seeking to protect his solar energy investments by spending tens of millions of dollars on key 2016 races, buying a plank in the 2016 Democrat platform, and trying to silence debate from those who challenge his view on ‘climate change’ by using select attorneys general to prosecute ‘dissenters.’”
Steyer’s total political spending in the 2016 elections came to $89,794,744. That amount was $12 million more than the leading conservative donor, and nearly as much as the next three liberal contributors combined. The New York Times reported on January 8, 2018 that Steyer pledged to spend $30 million to get Democrats elected to Congress with the aim of impeaching President Donald Trump. If you add in the $73,725,000 Steyer spent in the 2014, he has dedicated more than $193 million of his personal fortune to elect Democrats, mostly at the federal level, in just three federal election cycles. In none of those cycles has Steyer’s goal of giving Democrats control of Congress come to pass.
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