Tags: GOP2016 | Jeb Bush | California | donors

California Donors Not Yet Sold on Jeb Bush

Image: California Donors Not Yet Sold on Jeb Bush
(Molly Riley/UPI/Landov)

By    |   Wednesday, 01 Apr 2015 01:33 PM

Establishment donors in California have yet to throw their weight behind former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush as he courts their support for a likely 2016 presidential bid.

High-end Republican donors have told Politico that they are reluctant to make a commitment until they are more convinced of his candidacy.

"I have met in small groups with several of the candidates … but I'm still not ready to jump in yet," said longtime Republican donor Dale Dykema, who founded TD Service Financial.

"So much depends, as it has in recent years, as to what happens in those early primaries and caucuses, and I really think that I'm going to wait until I see what happens at least with the first two before I'm going to make any commitment."

Other donors in Orange County echoed a similar sentiment.

"After six years in the wilderness, I think Republican donors are thinking very carefully about who can beat the Democrats," said Mike Capaldi, a former chairman of the conservative Orange County Lincoln Club, an influential group of business elites.

"I think that a lot of donors in Orange County feel pretty strongly that we have to win this race. … The question comes down to who can beat Hillary Clinton. I think it's a good thing that Republican donors are hesitating and watching and learning."

The approach stands in contrast to when Mitt Romney attracted enthusiastic support early in the 2012 cycle.

"I don't see anyone lining up behind somebody. That's different than it was when Romney was running," said Tom Ross, political director for New Majority, an Orange County group that is California's largest Republican political action committee.

But it is thought that some of the commitments to Romney were born out of investments his team made in the years prior.

"Two years before the election and he already had a big team," said one longtime Orange County Republican donor, according to Politico. "You don't have anybody in the race that is starting from scratch that could pull off what Romney did."

Bush was in San Diego and Newport Beach this week for big money fundraisers and has other stops planned in Northern California.

Other candidates are also trying to tap into the area's donor network. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has already made several trips to the state in 2015 while Florida Sen. Marco Rubio was in Orange County in January. Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry has reportedly had some success on the fundraising circuit in the state, Politico said.

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Establishment donors in California have yet to throw their weight behind former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush as he courts their support for a likely 2016 presidential bid.
Jeb Bush, California, donors
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2015-33-01
Wednesday, 01 Apr 2015 01:33 PM
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