Prez 08 : Bay Area Money Flow

With President Bush in Hillsborough last night raising 1.5 million bucks, it looked like a fine time to see where the Bay Area’s many “Swells”, suckers, pundits, players and peons are putting their dough…

According to Federal Election Commission rules, contributions above $200 are required to be disclosed & through the painful magic of database technology I ran some names, zipcodes and candidates against the various fields.
The Crockers Like Mitt

In any case, big or small, it’s interesting to see so many who put money on guys like Edwards & Giuliani now that they’ve walked from the race, and how few of the Bay Area’s monied folks were interested in backing current Republican frontman McCain. On January 30th, the Time coverboy filed his end of year 2007 data with the FEC and it revealed just how little money he had in his coffers to start this year off.

Anyhow, if yer interested following some of the acknowledged money below the fold, look for yer faves from Craigslist, Google, The Gap and Metallica etc. …

Also after my more or less brief list, there’s info on how you too can easily check up on the political proclivities of yer own neighbors, bosses, corner store owners & fave celebs…

Some city addresses pull up mighty big numbers… take 1 Maritime Plaza for example. This office building is a big donor address repository, and in the last Presidential cycle going back to 2004, that address was responsible for $228,665 reported campaign donations, of which $132,900 went to Republicans and $145,765 to Democrats.

My fave Bay Area donation though had to be :

The Paw family, who live in an inauspicious Daly City bungalow at 41 Shelbourne Ave. but donated a total of $200,000 to Democratic candidates since 2005, including a combined $45,000 to Hilary Clinton alone. After scrutiny in the media, and the arrest of fugitive fundraiser Norman Hsu, Hilary says she returned the big bucks.

That didn’t stop her last year though from filing to be a candidate for Senate reelection in 2012, allowing her to raise money for two campaign accounts, giving her an extra quarter-million dollars from people who gave to both her 2012 Senate and 2008 presidential committees. In addition, Hilary quietly transferred $10 million in unspent donations from her last 2006 Senate reelection campaign to her presidential bid, in turn allowing previous Senate campaign donors to re-donate to the max once more…

One unabashed McCain supporter is San Francisco equity fund executive J. Gary Shansby who gave $5,000 to McCain’s Straight Talk Political action Committee last March, plus put the allowed $4,600 into McCain’s presidential campaign early on. When asked by the Washington Post last year about it he said “John’s supporters are passionate about him and his experience, and they are looking for any way they can legally support him, and they and I try to do so,”

————– the donors ——————-

Susie Tompkins Buell, the society page regular put $4,600 on Hilary, and apparently just to have something to talk about at cocktail pairties donated $2,300 to Tom Vilsack, likely thinking it was an incurable disease.

Amy Friedkin, former chair of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee sunk dough in multiple Democrats with Barack & Hilary getting $2,300 each, and even tossed a $1000 bone to Chris Dodd. Meanwhile her husband Morton split the family ticket by tossing $1,000 at Rudy Giuliani and Sam Brownback.

Charles Schwab, (yes, that Charles Schwab) put $2,300 in Rudy Giuliani’s “Remember 9/11” ballcap…but as of last May, Schwab had spead around $9,200 to GOP candidates — including former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, Arizona Sen. John McCain — and keeping up with fellow SF socialites even put some stray bucks down on long gone Christopher Dodd, the longshot Connecticut senator.

Craig Newmark of Craigslist has put his $2,500 in Barack Obama’s cap

Lawrence Lessig, the teenage Republican turned Stanford cyber law expert has said he will turn his focus on corruption in the political system and soon after that gave $2,300 to Obama.

Dr. “Larry” Brilliant, head of, and a long time medical philanthropist with the Seva foundation, put $2,300 into the Obama campaign.

Vinod Khosla, the Silicon Valley venture capitalist, spread out a total of $9,000 to a diverse batch of candidates last year: McCain, Obama, Clinton and Delaware Sen. Joe “Bye Bye” Biden.

Stanlee Gatti, the party planner for the elite has put his max $4,600 on Hilary Clinton.

Millionaire musician types for Edwards included Bonnie Raitt and Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich who both gave the ex-North Carolina Senator $2,300 each. Raitt also tossed Dennis Kucinich a $2,300 donation as well.

Kirk Hammett of Metallica put his usual $1000 annual contribution into the DNC.

Steve Kahn, a jazz guitarist, put $5,000 into the draft Rudy Giuliani PAC last year.

Thomas Weisel of his self named investment firm put $2,300 on Giuliani.

Janet Weiner, the Mill Valley based wife of radio host Michael Savage, is also Chief Financial Officer of the family’s biz known as Rockstar beverages, and she regularly energizes the Republican National Committee every few months with $2500 shots…

Charles Crocker, local big wig banking heir and his wife Lucinda (pictured above ) each put down $2,300 on Mitt Romney.

Peter Magowan, the Giants managing general partner gave $4,600 to McCain and $2,300 to Giuliani earlier last year, but interestingly, the ball club as a whole donated $10,000 to the DNC in 2000 as they cut deals for the downtown ballpark.

Lew Wolff , the owner of the Oakland/Fremont A’s was another Bay Area magnate giving dough to Dodd to the tune of $1,500 for the Connecticut Yankee.

David Netjes, the KKR hedge fund manager provides one of the few instances early in the cycle thus far to put money on McCain here locally with his $4,600 contribution.

Donnie Fowler, a politico who was a Gore staffer in 2000, and was voted runner up to Howard Dean for DNC chair, ended up giving Connecticut derby longshot Christopher Dodd $2,008, then covered his bases by giving Barack & Hilary $252 each.

Marc Benioff, the CEO put equal amounts in the campaigns of Obama, Romney, at $2,300 each, while giving McCain $4,600. Meanwhile his “unemployed” wife Lynee put $4,600 into the Obama tip jar.

Alissa Lee, Google’s Senior Corporate Counsel for Asia & the Americas signed off $4,600 for Obama from her home in shadows of Sutro Tower.

Elizabeth Fisher, heiress to the Gap throne lists her occupation as “designer” and plunked $4,600 on Hilary Clinton, but plays her “unemployed” card when throwing $2,300 for Barack.

Donald Fisher. Daddy of Elizabeth, and a major SF player put a $2,300 stamp of approval on Romney last year.

Kristi Yamaguchi, the pro-skater put a cool $2,300 donation into Romney’s campaign warchest from her Alamo abode.

Nan McAvoy. also plays both sides of the Dem ticket, throwing $4,600 on Hilary, but giving Barack Obama $4,000 as well.

Vanessa Getty, who says she’s into investments, tossed $4,600 into Hilary Clinton’s hat

Louise Renne, the former Supervisor, who’s now with Renne, Sloan, Holtzman & Sakai gave Hilary $3,000

Patricia Sinnott Schenkkan , a Health Economist for the VA, gave a healthy $3,300 to Hilary Clinton

Kurt Silver, owner of Big Pagoda furniture store on Sutter gave $1,115 to Barack Obama

A. Marissa Chun, the Nor Cal “Super Lawyer” tossed $2,300 in Obama’s coffers

Barbara Karshmer, an Indian tribal law specialist put the max $4,600 on Hilary

Dr. Gloria Horsley, an internet radio host, has thrown Mitt Romney $2,100

Betty Yee, the city’s State Board of Equalization member put $2,300 on John Edwards

Larry Bush, the public affairs director for SF’s Housing & Urban Development office gave John Edwards $2,300

Ann Baker, the PR manager for Jamba Juice put $2,300 into Obama’s campaign

Raj Patel of Farallon Capital gave Hilary Clinton $4,600, and including his donation it appears fellow employees at Farallon dropped $60,000 in 2007 for the Clinton campaign.

Michael Isrealite, the VP of Kaiser Permanente put $2,500 into Chris Dodd’s campaign

Steven Suzman, the local landscape design big wig donated $1,000 to Obama campaign

Jason Horwath, the IT director at Electronic Arts put $625 down on Obama

Mari Gumbs of Danville claims her occupation as a Howard Stern Listener and threw down $250 on Obama

Capt. Greg Corrales of the SFPD put $301 dollars on McCain

Scott Showalter, the development director of Stanford Law School put a $500 bet on Obama

Michela Alioto Pier, the Marina supervisor gave Hilary’s campaign $500.

Gerard Yvernault a wine industry captain for Kobrands put his initial $2,300 on Giuliani

If you’ve got names & zip codes you wanna run through the ol campaign donor databases try these sites;

The FEC’s own site is the motherlode

or try C Span

There are some commercialized & dumb downed user friendly alternatives as well:

5 Comments so far

  1. sf_mark (unregistered) on January 31st, 2008 @ 9:11 am

    Nice post, Mike! Good to have someplace to go besides that HuffPost site.

    I supported Edwards and was sad yesterday to see him go. Now I’ll support Obama.

  2. asa (unregistered) on February 4th, 2008 @ 9:22 am

    I don’t understand "the ball club as a whole donated $10,000 to the DNC in 2000 as they cut deals for the downtown ballpark."

    What deals were cut with the DNC? What are you talking about?

  3. lil mike (unregistered) on February 4th, 2008 @ 5:34 pm

    In the 2000 election cycle, it’s interesting to note that as the Giants ramped up for the stadium opening, owner MacGowan, a staunch Republican, had his ballclub spread an anomalous $10,000 donation amongst the DNC, the party of choice for SF’s reigning local governmental bureaucracy….

    It’s a known fact that the SF Giants received a deferred $10 million tax increment in stadium financing by the City’s Redevelopment Agency. The total subsidy to bring in the downtown park had a much larger public price tag estimated by urban planner Judith Grant Long in a study punlished by the Journal of Sports Economics: entitled "Full Count: The Real Cost of Public Funding for Major League Sports Facilities. Long’s research detailed how the Giants benefitted immensely by various public works, eminent domain evictions & transit projects done on their behalf to get the stadium accessible as well as up and running.

    With various tax incentives, the value of the land (donated), and other subsidies, Long has researched conclusions that, adjusted to 2001 dollars, the public shelled out 41% of the adjusted construction cost.

    That cost to taxpayers : $142 Million

    Does it help in SF do have friends in the DNC?

    If you don’t think so, look at the high level party campaign help Gavin Newsom received in his big spending yet tight runoff vs Green Party candidate Matt Gonzalez a few years ago.

  4. Asa (unregistered) on February 5th, 2008 @ 9:19 am

    If, as you suggest, the Giants got a return of $142 million on a $10,000 investment, the DNC needs to start charging more.

  5. Lil Mike (unregistered) on February 18th, 2008 @ 1:57 pm

    The DNC don’t have to charge more, they have public resources to bargain with, which cost them nothing personally.

    Most public officials will sell access fairly cheap, a little "vacation upgrade" here, a "massage session", a "gift" or campaign donation or two & other meager favors is often all it takes to get to them.

    Ask Jack Abramoff or anyone else on K street…

    It’s not a cliche’ for nothing, it’s more than a joke…

    The people attracted to the power of politics and "public official-dom" are some of the most vain and ridiculous a**holes you’d ever wanna meet. Most have never made a cent in the private sector outside of their gov’t sponsored positions, and owe everything to "supporters".

    It really doesn’t take that many steak dinners to keep an elected official, dep’t chief, building inspector or some random gov’t committee off your back…

    It’s also easy to garner their wrath by refusing to play…

    I know from personal experience…’nuff said

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