Liberal billionaire George Soros donated his second $250,000 contribution to Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum’s Forward Florida political action committee (PAC) in late June for his gubernatorial campaign.
Soros, who has given $700,000 to the PAC since the beginning of the campaign cycle, is one of two prominent billionaires financially backing the Democrat Gillum’s campaign. Soros’ son, Alex Soros, has also given $50,000 to Gillum’s PAC, according to Florida Politics.
California billionaire and political activist Tom Steyer was the other billionaire helping fund Gillum’s campaign. He endorsed Gillum, who has positioned himself as the anti-establishment progressive in the race, last Thursday and is expected to contribute $500,000 to Forward Florida as part of his endorsement.
Steyer, meanwhile, is expected also to contribute $500,000 to Forward Florida as part of his endorsement, according to the Daily Beast, which first broke the news. And because Steyer already has some “get out the vote” efforts underway in the state from his NextGen PAC, he expects to be able to contribute another $500,000 “spent on boosting Gillum vis-a-vis a variety of existing NextGen functions, including on-the-ground organizing, field programs and digital and mail campaigns to turn out voters under 40,” the Beast reported.
While Gillum’s personal fundraising has been largely pedestrian compared to some of his opponents, he was the beneficiary of a Hollywood fundraiser back in March with big names like actress Alyssa Milano and actor Alec Baldwin in attendance.
Gillum has positioned himself as a progressive, but both of his Republican and Democratic opponents have taken notice of the financial influence from Soros and Steyer on his campaign’s finances. Adam Putnam, Florida’s Agriculture Commissioner and Republican gubernatorial candidate, has been an outspoken critic of the two billionaires trying to influence the election.
Jeff Greene, the Democratic billionaire challenger to Gillum, has also criticized the influence of Steyer and Soros in the race.
“If you want to have Florida be managed by George Soros and whatever he wants, regardless of whether the governor likes it, and Tom Steyer, then you can go with Andrew Gillum,” Greene said over the weekend.
Florida’s gubernatorial primary is scheduled for August 28.