How many Americans have so much money burning a hole in their pocket that they’re blowing past the now-defunct overall political contribution limits, which were struck down in the April McCutcheon v. FEC ruling?
Open Secrets has crunched the numbers and so far, 310 people have give more than the total $123,200 they were previously limited to — or roughly 1 in a million Americans.
Coming in at No. 1 is philanthropist Marsha Z. Laufer, who has padded Democrats’ bottom line by $384,900. Investment firm founder Charles R. Schwab comes in second, with $338,900 going to Republicans.
Anything that opens up the right of citizen to contribute to his or her choice of a candidate for public office… is basically a good thing, Roy Pfautch, a public affairs consultant from St. Louis, told OpenSecrets Blog. I now have the opportunity to support whom I want.
So far in this election cycle, Pfautch has donated $165,800 to Republican recipients.
One person who is missing from the list of 310 is Shaun McCutcheon, an Alabama Republican businessman who sued to eliminate the campaign donation limits. So far, he’s given $85,412, according to records.
How much additional money has flowed because of the court ruling?
Records show that through June 30, this elite group has donated a total of $49.8 million, which is $11.6 million more than they would have been able to under the old limits.
So who fills out the political donations list?
Here’s a look at the top 50, with the bulk of the money going to Republicans: