Aug 16, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Sheldon Adelson makes nice with Trump

Sheldon Adelson and his wife Sandra at a Trump rally in February
Sheldon Adelson and his wife Miriam at a Trump rally in February. Photo: Jim Watson/AFP via Getty Images

Despite a tense recent phone call with President Trump — first reported by the New York Times — the most important mega-donor in the Republican Party, Sheldon Adelson, has signaled he is poised to spend big to support the president.

Behind the scenes: Last Monday morning a group of top Republican Party donors gathered at the Four Seasons resort in Jackson Hole, Wyo., for a Trump campaign fundraiser.

The donors gathered in a hotel ballroom, set up like a Silicon Valley retreat, with a yogurt parfait station, according to sources in the room.

  • A select few of the party's biggest donors sent aides in their place — and this was the case with casino billionaire Adelson and his wife, Miriam.
  • Adelson's top adviser Andy Abboud entered the room late, toward the end of the meeting. He raised his hand for a question, and they gave him the mic, according to two sources who were there.
  • "I just want to say that I just spoke to the Adelsons," Abboud announced to the room. "They are 110% behind the president. And that's going to become apparent shortly."

Why it matters: The Adelsons have the biggest checkbooks in Republican politics. They spend tens of millions of dollars each cycle, and the recent New York Times story — which reported that in a recent phone call Trump "upbraided [Adelson] for not donating more to support his reelection" — made some Republican officials nervous that Trump had alienated the party's most important donor.

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