Abrams’ leadership committee attracts big donors from West Coast, unions

Democratic candidate for Georgia governor Stacy Abrams talks to a crowd during a campaign stop at the Two Eggs restaurant in McDonough Saturday, July 9, 2022. Steve Schaefer / steve.schaefer@ajc.com)

Credit: Steve Schaefer

Combined ShapeCaption
Democratic candidate for Georgia governor Stacy Abrams talks to a crowd during a campaign stop at the Two Eggs restaurant in McDonough Saturday, July 9, 2022. Steve Schaefer / steve.schaefer@ajc.com)

Credit: Steve Schaefer

Democratic megadonor George Soros wasn’t the only big name to contribute to Stacey Abrams’ leadership committee in recent months.

Abrams, the Democratic nominee for governor facing off against Gov. Brian Kemp, reported raising $18.5 million through her leadership committee, a new entity created by the Legislature that allows a few politicians to raise unlimited funds, skirting contribution limits.

So far, Abrams’ committee has far outpaced Kemp’s. His committee raised $2.9 million in the most recent filing period.

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution previously reported Soros gave $2.5 million to Abrams’ committee, and it noted a $1.5 million donation from Fair Fight, the voting rights group she founded, plus $1 million from the Democratic governors’ association.

The committee’s disclosure filed Friday shows she also received $2.5 million from Silicon Valley philanthropist and major Democratic donor Karla Jurvetson. It also collected $1 million each from the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers; the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees; Elizabeth Simons, co-founder of the Heising-Simons Foundation; and Donald Sussman, an asset manager and philanthropist.

The committee received $500,000 from the American Federation of Teachers, $500,000 from the Service Employees International Union and $300,000 from the National Association of Educators,

From Hollywood, the committee received $50,000 from Kate Capshaw, $50,000 from Steven Spielberg, $25,000 from Leonardo DiCaprio, $25,000 from Ed Helms; $10,000 from Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson, $10,000 from Bryan Cranston and $1,500 from Barbara Streisand.

Kemp’s leadership committee received more than half of its donations this quarter from his campaign or related entities. He also got $100,000 from Michigan GOP donor Jon Cotton, CEO of ApexHealth, a provider of Medicare Advantage Plans, Georgians Donald Leebern III and Ben Tarbutton, whose families have traditionally been big donors to governors in power, and Lucky Bucks, a coin-operated machine company.

He also received several contributions from business groups that have lobbyists at the Capitol.