Liberals and the Mega-Rich, Continued

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
May 25 2012 3:19 PM

Liberals and the Mega-Rich, Continued

Andrew Gelman disagrees with my story from yesterday, about the absence of big liberal money when it comes to beating moderate Democrats in primaries.

[R]ich people are more likely to be conservative and Republican. Weigel talks about mega-donors for a hypothetical “Club for Socialism.” But extreme left economic views are not popular among the rich. Here are some graphs. Ideological foaming about “trustfunders” aside, if campaigns are funded by rich “megadonors,” we’re going to see a push to conservative policies, especially on economic issues. The two parties are not symmetric.
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This is an important but digressive point. All I was asking: How come the small group of big liberal funders who clearly want progressive Democrats in office aren't putting their money behind the cause? We know that there aren't as many of these people, but you don't need that many to swing an election. Art Pope can move a few mountains around in North Carolina; a 21-year old with an inheritance can help a Ron Paul-ian win a Kentucky landslide. But you don't see Soros or someone with new money like Chris Hughes using it to engineer these kinds of liberal wins.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. You can reach him at daveweigel@gmail.com, or tweet at him @daveweigel.