Large donors to the Rick Perry campaign for governor of Texas are beginning to reap the benefits of their donations, or more appropriately, investments. Reports have shown that numerous individuals and couples who’ve invested in Perry, are getting multi-million dollar contracts and subsidies from the state of Texas, and some even get jobs in the Perry administration.
The LA Times reports that over the last 10 years, Rick Perry received $37 million from just 150 people, and of these “donors,” nearly half have received “hefty business contracts, tax breaks or appointments under Perry, according to a Los Angeles Times analysis.” The Times investigation found “donors” like billionaire Harald Simmons, who invested $1.2 million dollars in Perry. Simmons was rewarded with “permission to build a low-level radioactive waste disposal site in Texas, a project that promises to generate hundreds of millions of dollars.”
Auto magnate B.J. “Red” McCombs, who contributed nearly $400,000 to the governor, is the primary financial backer for a Formula One racetrack to be built near Austin. The state has pledged $25 million a year in subsidies to support the project.
The Houston-based engineering firm of James Dannenbaum, who gave more than $320,000 to Perry, received multiple transportation contracts from the state. In 2007, Perry appointed Dannenbaum to a coveted post on the University of Texas’ board of regents.
A Mississippi-based poultry company run by Joe Sanderson, who gave $165,000 to Perry, received a $500,000 grant from a state business incentive fund championed by Perry to open a chicken hatchery and processing plant in Waco.
With its mix of big-money industries like oil and campaign finance rules that allow unlimited political donations, Texas has a reputation for monied campaigns. And its elected officials have long sought to elevate their political patrons.
Cal Jillson, a professor of political science at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, said donors had benefited more under Perry’s administration than they did under recent governors such as Democrat Ann Richards and Republican George W. Bush, Perry’s predecessor.
Now, Rick Perry is trying to take his investment company called the Rick Perry Presidential Campaign, nationwide, but in order for him to succeed, he must come to the little people to get their votes. Vote for Perry, the millionaires and billionaires need more hand-outs!0