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Top McAuliffe Donors Slept in Lincoln Bedroom

Anita Kumar

Seven people who have given Democratic gubernatorial candidate Terry McAuliffe at least $5,000 have slept in the Lincoln Bedroom during the Clinton administration, according to campaign reports released last night.

They are:

Mark Weiner, former Rhode Island Democratic state chairman and superdelegate ($40,000).

Carl Lindner, chairman of the board and founder of American Financial Group and former owner of the Cincinnati Reds ($15,000).

Alan M. Leventhal, chairman and chief executive officer of Beacon Capital Partners, an international real estate investment company ($15,000).

John Catsimatidis, owner of Gristedes Foods and the Red Apple Group and its subsidiary United Refining Company, which has holdings in aviation and real estate ($5,000).

Alan Patricof, co-founder of Apax Partners, Inc., one of the world's leading private equity firms and a finance chairman for Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign ($5,000).

Stanley Shuman, managing director at investment banking firm Allen & Company ($5,000).

Steven Green, vice president and chief accounting officer at Pitney Bowes, an intelligence and marketing company ($5,000).

McAuliffe received contributions from some of the nation's top Democratic donors who were close to the Clintons. At least two of them also contributed to U.S. Sen. Mark R. Warner (D).

"These are major Democratic donors who have given to Democratic candidates across the country, including Barack Obama,'' said Elisabeth Smith, McAuliffe's spokeswoman. "It's no surprise that they would get involved in the Virginia gubernatorial campaign."

By Anita Kumar  |  April 16, 2009; 8:05 PM ET
Categories:  Anita Kumar  
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The spokeswoman for Terry McAuliffe would have us believe that these donors have given to previous candidates for Governor, not just the ones who once pondered running for Governor of Florida.

The larger issue is, Terry McAuliffe auctioned off an overnight trip where a donor could sleep in the most historic room in a home that NEVER should have any fundraising in it.

But this poor taste is exactly what we've come to expect from the Puerto Rican rum swigger McAuliffe. His latest remark about keeping signs up at the Shad Planking is in such poor taste, it doesn't bear repeating to the Post's audience.

I am a life long Democrat who has NEVER voted for a Republican for Governor, Senator or President, but I will NOT vote for Terry McAuliffe if Virginia's Democrats are foolish enough to nominate him.

Sens. Webb, Warner, and Gov. Kaine, you need to step in and stop this train wreck before it happens.

Posted by: fakevirginia | April 17, 2009 1:36 AM | Report abuse

Terry is close to the Clinton's?!!? Stop the press, breaking news!!!

Posted by: duckz | April 17, 2009 8:14 AM | Report abuse

How does accepting donations make him a train wreck? Do you just not understand politics?

If you want to gripe about the practice of fundraising from folks who can raise a lot of money for a party, switch your affiliation to the Republican Party and support a candidate who gets his money from CEOs that rip off the common man and don't adopt efficient standards to reduce consumer costs due to the cuts it would promise for their bonuses. Go ahead. I dare you.

And try not to get into fundraising or campaign management. You wouldn't do well.

Posted by: robsmithiii | April 17, 2009 8:26 AM | Report abuse

Is Terry McAuliffe running as a stalking horse for the Clintons?

Terry was the Clinton's top cheerleader in Virginia and as we know Hillary did not do so well in the Commonwealth versus Obama.

Could having Terry in the Governor's Mansion position the Clinton machine for 2012 in the case that President Obama stumbles?

Holding the Governor's office of a key swing state allows a great deal of advantage to a presidential campaign.

While President Obama is holding the Clintons close with Hillary at State, it would not be beyond them to bite Obama in the back should the opportunity arise...

Posted by: Fairfax2 | April 17, 2009 1:27 PM | Report abuse

It's surprising that Terry McAuliffe would accept a campaign contribution from Carl Lindner, as it provides a fresh opportunity for his critics to point out the following:

1) Lindner helped raise over $2 million for George Bush's 2004 re-election campaign and donated $200,000 to the Bush-Cheney inauguration, half directly and half through American Financial Group.
2) Lindner contributed $350,000 to Swift Boat Veterens for Truth.
3) Lindner was CEO of Chiquita Brands International from 1984 to 2001, and continued on it's board of directors until May 2002. Chiquita has large banana plantations in Columbia. In 1997 the company began payments of $1.7 million to the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC), an arrangement that lasted seven years. Half of this money came after the AUC was designated a Foreign Terrorist Organization by the U.S. State Department in 2001. In 2007, the U.S. government fined Chiquita $25 million dollars for its illegal support of this group, which has been described by George Washington University’s National Security Archive as an "illegal right-wing anti-guerrilla group tied to many of the country’s most notorious civilian massacres."
4) According to the New York Times, Lindner in 1995 provided the money for McAuliffe to buy American Heritage Homes, then the second-largest home builder in Florida, in partnership with American Financial Group. Lindner also joined with McAuliffe to buy a set of properties divested by the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers after its pension fund was investigated and sued by the Dept. of Labor. The properties had originally been owned by a failed S & L, then bought by a partnership in which the IBEW received a 50% stake for $38.7 million and McAuliffe got 50% for paying the $100 Florida partnership filing fee.
5) What did Lindner get in return for the $350,000 in donations McAuliffe solicited from him for the DNC between 1993 and 1995? An expensive banana trade war with Europe, even though the U.S. does not export bananas.
6) What does Lindner hope to get from Virginia for contributing to the campaign of a man he would like to see become our next governor?

Posted by: passionateVAdemocrat | April 17, 2009 4:16 PM | Report abuse

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