Sheldon Adelson gave $5 million to Trump inauguration festivities


The commander in chief raised $107 million for his January 20 swearing-in ceremony, more than doubling the previously record-holding $53 million President Barack Obama raised for his 2009 inauguration, according to Federal Election Commission records made public on Tuesday.

Four years ago, Obama raised $43.7 million for his scaled-down second inauguration, which cost $40.3 million.

AT&T was among the largest contributors to President Trump's inaugural committee, accounting for more than $2 million of the record-breaking $106.7 million haul. Adelson gave $5 million, while Wynn donated $729,217 in entertainment through his Wynn Resorts.

The report also shows the influence of large corporations, who can not give directly to candidates during the campaign: Bank of America, Pfizer, Boeing, Dow Chemical and AT&T each gave $1 million to support Trump during the lead-up to the inauguration.

As part of winding down the inaugural committee, the organization said it plans to identify charities that will receive donations from excess money in its account.

Though the committee didn't reveal how much of the funds are left over, the remaining amount will be donated to charity.

Trump chose to specially thank Adelson and his wife Miriam - staunch Republicans and major supporters of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu - at a luncheon honoring congressional Republicans the evening before the inauguration.

The celebrity businessman's inaugural involved less hoopla than others in recent years.

It was the largest-ever single contribution for an inauguration, said the report.

Federal law allows inaugural committees to largely determine their own rules about who can contribute and how much.

Several NFL team owners stepped up to write $1 million checks to Trump's committee.

Trump's $107 million fundraising total is "an very bad lot of money - it's roughly what we spent on two", said Steve Kerrigan, who was CEO for Obama's inaugural committee in 2013 and chief of staff in 2009.

The report is likely to only intensify questions about Trump's commitment to the populist ideas raised in recent weeks by several policy shifts and realignments among White House staff. Kerrigan said the inaugural events may have served as an opportunity for donors to try to curry favor with the incoming president.

Billionaire investor Paul Singer, for example, gave $1 million after long expressing skepticism about Trump. Bank of America, Charles Schwab, Forrest and Lutnick did not immediately respond to a request for comment. President George W. Bush limited gifts at $100,000 in 2001 and $250,000 in 2005. It also raises a new round of questions about the influence of money in politics, this time for a president who promised to "drain the swamp" of Washington.

The Review-Journal is owned by the family of Las Vegas Sands Corp. Howard Lutnick, chairman and CEO of Cantor Fitzgerald, gave $1 million.