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The Top Super PACs of 2016: What You Need to Know About Them

By    |   Wednesday, 06 May 2015 09:26 AM

2016 is the year of the super PAC, according to Politico, which reports that having one has become a must for anybody who’s running, or considering running, for the White House.

The rise of super PACs — which allow supporters to raise unlimited amounts of money from corporations, unions, associations, and individuals — spawned from a 2010 Supreme Court decision that found the government cannot restrict independent political expenditures by a nonprofit organization.

The 2012 race between President Barack Obama and GOP nominee Mitt Romney saw a combined total of $230 million from super PACs, small potatoes compared to what’s taking place for 2016, according to Politico.

That election was the first since the 2010 Supreme Court decision. Ninety percent of the money was spent on media.

Here’s the latest on super PACS that are defining the 2016 race and who they are benefiting:
  • In late April, The Washington Post reported that former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush told top donors to his Right to Rise super PAC that they made history by raising more money in the organization’s first 100 days than any other Republican operation in modern history. While Bush did not mention a figure, the Post reported that Right to Rise was on track to raise $100 million by the end of May. Bush has been a target of critics who accuse him of skirting the law by attending a slew of super PAC fundraisers without announcing his candidacy. Federal rules require candidates to keep their distance once they officially enter the race.
  • Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, who has declared his candidacy, has a "cluster" of Keep the Promise super PACs, according to Politico, which reports that combined they raised more than $30 million in a single week.
  • Last month, veteran GOP strategist J. Warren Tompkins launched Conservative Solutions PAC to benefit Florida Sen. Marco Rubio. The Washington Post reported that seasoned veterans would be staffing the organization.
  • Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul will use the same super PAC as his father, former presidential candidate Ron Paul, according to the National Journal. America's Liberty was founded several years ago by Ron Paul’s strategist.
  • New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie is the beneficiary of the America Leads super PAC launched in March by Phil Cox, the former executive director to the Republican Governors Association, which Christie chaired in 2014, according to the Post.
  • Retired neurosurgeon Dr. Ben Carson's National Draft Ben Carson for President super PAC raised $13.5 million since August 2013, but has spent nearly the entire amount, according to the Center for Public Integrity.
  • Supporters of Carly Fiorina, the former Hewlett-Packard CEO and now declared presidential candidate, recently formed Carly For America.
  • Hillary Clinton's network of supporters has formed an "elaborate network" of groups, each with a specific purpose, according to Politico. The Clinton campaign reportedly has set a goal of raising $1 billion for the former secretary of state’s presidential bid. "Correct the Record, a project affiliated with the super PAC and nonprofit American Bridge 21st Century, is focused on defending the former secretary of state," according to Politico. "Priorities USA Action is the big money operation that is expected to spend millions on advertising; and Ready for Hillary was focused on bringing in smaller-dollar donations and grassroots, list-building operations."

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2016 is the year of the Super PAC, according to Politico, which reports that having one has become a must for anybody who's running, or considering running, for the White House.
super pacs, fundraising, 2016, president, campaigns
Wednesday, 06 May 2015 09:26 AM
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