Well-Known Trump Backers: The Celebrities and Billionaires Backing #45
While President Donald Trump may not have the approval of a majority of Americans (depending on the poll) there’s no doubt he has the backing of many of America’s richest citizens and recognizable faces. These well-known Trump backers have donated large sums of money, time, and publicity to ensuring Trump is reelected in 2020.
While many of these well-known Trump backers supported the 2016 Trump campaign, some did not. However, all on board the Trump 2020 train, and many of the the billionaire backers have contributed money to the Trump Make America Great Again Committee or Trump Victory committee, which is then transferred to the Donald J. Trump For President Committee.
UFC President Dana White has been an outspoken supporter of President Trump, appearing at several campaign rallies and speaking at both the 2016 and 2020 Republican National Conventions. White has donated over $1 million to Trump reelection efforts.
Despite being fired from the successful Roseanne reboot due to her controversial tweets, Roseanne Barr as continuously been a supporter of President Trump since his election. In 2018 she said, “I’m not a racist and the people who voted for Trump, they’re not racist either, and Trump isn’t a racist, sorry. We just have a different opinion.”
Scott Baio, of Happy Days fame, has been an ardent Trump supporter since 2016, and famously delivered a prime-time address at that year’s RNC. He’s continued praising the president throughout his term, and has been active campaigning for Trump in 2020.
Quaid, whose brother Randy is also a Trump supporter, said in May of 2020, “I think Trump, no matter what anybody thinks of him, is doing a good job at trying to get these states — and all of the American people — what they need… and also trying to hold our economy together and be prepared for when this is all over.”
Ted Nugent has long-been one of the entertainment industry’s most outspoken conservatives, and his support of Trump has never wavered. He’s said of the president, “Donald Trump’s message sings to Americans because he doesn’t play politically correct brain-dead games. He calls them like he sees them.” He’s also selling a cap on his website inscribed with a NSFW message of “Re-Elect the Mother (BLEEPER)” without the bleeper.
“This November, we must vote to help keep President Trump in office so he can carry the torch for this land of the free.”
Yeah, that pretty much nails down Jon Voight’s political stance in one simple line.
Cheers actress Kirstie Alley has a quite politically active Twitter account, often full of praise for President Trump and derision for Democrats. She’s referred to Joe Biden as “masquerading as a coherent presidential candidate.”
“Let’s face it, Donald Trump is a rough individual. He is vain, insensitive and raw. But he loves America more than any President in my lifetime. He is the last firewall between us and this cesspool called Washington. I’ll take him any day over any of these bums. #Trump2020”
That’s it, that’s the tweet.
Actress Stacey Dash, best known for the film Clueless, was initially a supporter of the Democratic Party. However, she voted for Mitt Romney in the 2012 presidential election and never looked back. She’s become a popular conservative commentator in recent years, and proudly identifies as a “woman for Trump.”
Duck Dynasty’s Willie Robertson has appeared at several Trump events along with his father, and said this of the president in 2019:
“Mr. Trump is a real leader. He represents success and strength, two attributes our country needs.”
Lois and Clark actor Dean Cain is seen as a real life superhero by many conservatives thanks to his outspoken support for President Trump and the second amendment. In a 2019 interview he said, “I have full and complete faith in the president.”
Behind perhaps only Ted Nugent, no musician has been more supportive of President Trump than Kid Rock. He’s visited the White House, and regularly golfed with Trump during his term.
UFC fighter Colby Covington has long been an outspoken supporter of President Trump, often wearing a MAGA hat to the octagon and building a friendship with Donald Trump Jr.
MLB Hall of Fame Mariano Rivera has expressed his approval for President Trump numerous times, most recently at a White House event tied into the start of the 2020 MLB season. Riversa said of Trump at the time, “He was a friend of mine before he became president. So, because he’s president I will turn my back on him? No. I respect him. I respect what he does and I believe he’s doing the best for the United States of America.”
Vince & Linda McMahon
WWE owner Vince McMahon and his wife Linda (the wrestling company’s former CEO) have long been cohorts of Donald Trump. Prior to his presidency, Trump hosted two of the company’s WrestleMania events in 1988 and 1989 respectively, and appeared at ringside for a heavily promoted match in 2007. In return, the McMahon’s were the largest donor to Trump’s foundation that year. In addition, Linda McMahon served as Chief of the Small Business Administration under Trump from 2016 to 2019, before departing the Administration to head the America First Action super pac. The McMahons – net worth $1.9 billion– donated $152,700 to Trump’s 2016 campaign, and $300,000 in 2020.
Lorenzo & Frank Fertitta
The Fertitta brothers made the bulk of their combined $1.7 billion fortune thanks to UFC. The brothers bought the MMA league for $2 million in 2001, and sold it for $4 billion (with a B) in 2016. They also own the Red Rocks Resorts casino business. Lorenzo and Frank, along with their wives Teresa and Jill, donated $793,000 in 2016, and $721,200 per couple in 2020.
Stephen Baldwin has been quoted saying he likes the fact that Donald Trump “doesn’t care what anybody thinks” and “is not a politician.” He continued to show his support of Trump by retweeting him and the First Lady.
Robert Davi, most well-known for his supporting role in The Goonies, said in a 2019 interview that some people in Hollywood refuse to work with him because of his political beliefs. “The key grips, sound guys, 95 percent are for Trump,” he said. “They come to me and say, ‘Thank you for speaking up for us’.”
On 50’s Instagram, he posted Joe Biden’s tax plan for some states as reported by the media. Ultimately, this resulted in his announcement that he no longer supports Biden and he is now voting for the incumbent. To many, the bottom line is what matters most.
Connor McGregor, UFC Superstar, praised President Trump in January 2020, saying on Twitter, “Phenomenal president. Quite possibly the USA [greatest of all time]. Most certainly one of them anyway, as he sits atop the shoulders of many amazing giants that came before him.”
Rick Harrison, of the reality show, Pawn Stars, initially supported Trump in his 2016 campaign. In February 2020, Harrison appeared at the Conservative Political Action Conference, where he said, “He is going to go down in history as one of our greatest presidents.”
Rapper Lil Pump announced in his Instagram story his support of President Donald Trump following the release of Joe Biden’s tax plan which would have him paying more in taxes. This is a reference to Biden’s pledge to raise taxes on Americans making over $400,000 annually, a tax bracket the rapper certainly falls in.
Rapper Lil Wayne tweeted that he met with the President and approved of the Platinum Plan for Black Americans which promises to provide $500 billion to the Black community. His tweet read, “Just had a great meeting with @realdonaldtrump @potus besides what he’s done so far with criminal reform, the platinum plan is going to give the community real ownership,” Lil Wayne tweeted. “He listened to what we had to say today and assured he will and can get it done.”
Charles and Helen Dolan, perhaps best known pop culturally as the parents of controversial New York Knicks owner James Dolan, are one of America’s richest couples. Thanks to a career in cable television, which currently includes controlling stakes in AMC and the Madison Square Garden Company, they’re worth $4.7 billion. The Dolans have donated $125,000 to President Trump’s 2020 reelection, despite not having donated to his 2016 campaign.
Ronald Perelman “earned” (depending on your definition) his money as one of the 1980s and 90s best known corporate raiders, owning controlling shares in. numerous companies including Revlon cosmetics and Marvel Comics. A well known conservative figure, Perelman has donated $125,000 to Trump in 2020. According to available records, he didn’t do the same in 2016.
Houston Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta earned the majority of his $4.7 billion (yes billion, with a B) fortune from entertainment enterprises he owns through his company Landry, Inc. These include 600 restaurants, hotels, casinos and entertainment venues across the United States. Fertitta also penned the successful memoir Shut Up and Listen. He and his wife Paige have donated $140,000 to the Trump 2020 committees.
Stephen Winn parlayed his experience working as an electrical engineer for his father’s company Computer Language Research into his own company, RealPage, which provides rental management software to landlords. He and his wife Melinda have donated $150,000 to the 2020 Trump committees, following up on their $100,000 donation from 2016.
Ronald Wanek made his $2.4 billion fortune in furniture. He founded the Arcadia Furniture manufacturing company in 1970, and merged with Ashley Furniture in 1976. The company, which kept the latter name, has earned him $2.4 billion and is currently run by his son Todd who’s also a billionaire. Despite not donating directly to the 2016 Trump Campaign, Wanek and his wife Joyce have long been Republican donors, and have given $170,000 to the president’s 2020 reelection.
Charles Simonyi’s name might not be as recognizable as Bill Gates or Steve Balmer, but it can be argued that his contributions to Microsoft (including designing Word and Excel) are just as big a part of the company’s success as anyone else’s. However, while he may not have the press, he certainly has the cash, being worth over $4.1 billion thanks to his work with Microsoft and his own company Intentional Software. Charles & Lisa Simonyi donated $52,700 to Trump’s 2016 campaign, bumped to $200,000 in 2020.
Trilogy Software founder Joe Liemandt burst onto the tech scene in the mid-1990s, appearing on the cover of Forbes at age 27 thanks to his then $500 million net worth. Said worth has continued to skyrocket, with Liemandt worth $3 billion these days. In 2020, he donated $200,00 of that $3 billion to Trump.
Ronald Lauder, the current chairman of Clinique Laboratories and youngest son of Estée Lauder, is worth a cool $4 billion thanks to his family’s cosmetics company. He’s not only donated $200,000 to Trump’s 2020 reelection, he’s also advised the White House on Israel in his role as president of the World Jewish Congress.
Ken Fisher has made $4.4 billion since he founded Fisher Investments in 1979. In addition, he’s penned 11 books, including 6 bestsellers, and regularly written for USA Today. Fisher and his wife Sherrilyn donated $50,000 to the 2016 Trump campaign, and have upped their 2020 donation to $250,000.
Peter Thiel, for better or worse, is one of best known figures in the tech world. He cofounded PayPal and made a fortune, then became an early investor in FaceBook and made an even bigger fortune. Theil currently has a net worth of $2.5 billion, and has donated $250,000. to Donald Trump’s campaigns in both 2016 and 2020.
Stewart Rahr turned Kinray, a pharmaceutical distributor founded by his father in the 1940s, into such a success that he was able to sell the company for $1.3 billion in 2010. The sale, plus smart investments have left him with an overall net worth of $2.3 billion. He gave Trump’s 2016 campaign $449,650 in 2016, and has contributed $250,000 in 2020.
Thomas Peterffy is (perhaps ironically) the definition of an American immigrant success story. He arrived in the United States with from Hungary in 1965 with nothing but the clothes on his back. These days Peterffy is CEO of Interactive Brokers (an online trading platform) as well as a landowner of 500,000 acres of timberland in Florida, all off which combined gives him a net worth of $16.2 billion. He’s donated $250,000 to Trump 2020, an increase from the $100,000 he gave in 2016.
Along with his brother Dan, Farris Wilks founded Frac Tech in 2002. Over the next decade the brothers grew their company into one of the largest fracking companies in the world, before cashing out in 2011 for a combined $3.5 billion. The brothers have remained active in investing and landowning since. Though they did not contribute in 2016, Farris and his wife Jo Ann have donated $250,000 to the 2020 Trump committees.
John Paulson founded the hedge fund firm Paulson and Co. in 1994, but didn’t become well known in the financial world until he “made his fortune betting against subprime mortgages at the peak of the 2007 credit bubble.” Paulson has donated $331,372 to the 2020 Trump committees, up from the $250,000 donated in 2016.
Christopher “Kit” Goldsbury
Christopher “Kit” Goldsbury worked his way from assembly line worker to company president of Pace Foods in the 1970s (Marrying the company founder’s daughter probably helped). After their separation in 1987, Goldsbury acquired her portion of the company for $95 million. Seven years later, Goldsbury sold the company to Cambell’s soup for $1.2 billion. Goldsburt and his current wife Angela donated $52,500 to the 2016 Trump campaign, upped to $400,000 in 2020.
Darwin Deason led a long and fruitful career in tech, which culminated in the sale of his company Affiliated Computer Services to Xerox for $6.4 billion, which left him with a personal net worth of $1.3 billion. Deason donated $449,400 to Trump in 2016, and $405,000 so far in 2020.
Phillip Ruffin made his $3.1 billion fortune through casino and real estate holdings, including a 50% stake in the Trump International Las Vegas along with, you guessed it, Donald Trump. Perhaps unsurprisingly, Ruffin and his wife Oleksandra Nikolyenko-Ruffin have been big Trump supporters, contributing $625,000 to the president’s 2016 campaign, and $695,400 in 2020.
Stephen Schwarzman founded Blackstone with Peter Peterson in 1985, and the two turned it into one of the world’s most valuable buyout firms. Swhwarzman still serves as Blackstone’s CEO today, and contributed $699,400 to Trump 2020 fundraising committees after donating nothing in 2016.
Charles B. Johnson
Charles B. Johnson (net worth $3.7 billion) became CEO of his father’s money management company Franklin Templeton Investments in 1957, and stayed for a remarkable 56 years before handing over the reigns to his son in 2013. In 2016, he and his wife Ann donated $210,800 to the Trump campaign, and have reached over $700,000 in 2020.
Kelcy Warren has made a vast majority of his $2.5 billion net worth as the CEO of Energy Transfer LP, of which he is CEO and chairman. The company is perhaps best known for building the $3.8 billion Dakota Access Pipeline after an executive order from President Trump. Kelcy & Amy Warren donated $100,000 to the Trump campaign in 2016, and over $721,000 for 2020.
Ike Perlmutter has had his hand in many businesses over the years, but is best known for taking control of a then-bankrupt Marvel Comics in the mid-1990s, and playing a major part in positioning the brand for the Hollywood dominance it enjoys today. He sold his controlling interest in Marvel to Disney in 2009 for a picture of $800 million in cash and $590 million in Disney stock, giving him a net worth of $4.2 billion. Perlmutter and wife Laura $449,400 to Trump in 2016, and $721,200 in 2020.
Jeffery Hildebrand co-founded Hilcorp in 1990, and by 2020 had turned the company into the largest privately owned oil company in the United States. Hildebrand and his wife Melinda donated $2,700 to the 2016 Trump campaign, and a significantly larger $775,000 in 2020.
In 1998, Kenny Troutt sold Excel Communications – a company he’d founded in 1988 – to Teleglobe for $3.5 billion deal and reinvested the profits in stocks, bonds and horse racing businesses, that have grown his net worth to $1.5 billion. He and his wife Lisa donated $200,000 to the Trump campaign in 2016, and have given $925,000 to the Trump committees in 2020.
Diane Hendricks her late husband founded ABC Supply, a roofing supply wholesale distribution company in 1982. Since his 2007 death, she’s led ABC in making two huge acquisitions, buying rival Bradco in 2010 and building materials distributor L&W Supply in 2016, upping her personal net worth to $7.6 billion. Hendricks donated $212,300 to the Trump campaign in 2016, and has given $935,600 to Trump committees in 2020.
Dennis Washington turned a love of construction and a $30,000 loan into Washington Companies, a diversified company that owns (among other things) a copper mine, a regional railroad and stakes in two diamond mines. He and his wife Phyllis did not donate to Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign, but have contributed $1,000,000 to Trump in 2020.
Andrew Beal is the founder and owner of Beal Financial Corporation and Beal Bank, which are known for buying distressed assets, mortgages, bonds backed by commercial planes and IOUs to power plants. Beal’s financial adeptness has led to him achieving a net worth of $8.1 billion. He’s donated $1,038,400 to Trump pacs in 2020, on top of the $549,400 he gave to the 2016 Trump campaign.
Joe Ricketts founded brokerage firm Ameritrade forty years ago, and he and the company pioneered online stock trading . The company was acquired TD Waterhouse for $2.9 billion in stock and cash in 2006 and renamed itself TD Ameritrade, helping Rickets establishes a net worth of $2.1 billion. Though retired, Rickets still owns 7% of the company, making him the largest individual shareholder, while his children own the Chicago Cubs baseball team. Ricketts and his wife Marlene didn’t officially donate to the 2016 Trump campaign, but they’ve contributed $1,050,600 to Trump pacs in 2020.