Hollywood's Top Power Players Favor Kamala Harris in Early Campaign Donations

Kamala Harris-Getty-H 2019
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Among 2020 contributions made by members of the annual Hollywood Reporter 100 list, nearly half went to the California senator's bid since donations began.

So far, California Sen. Kamala Harris is the choice of top Hollywood power players who have made donations to the large field of Democrats running for the 2020 presidential nomination.

Some 48 percent of the 2020 donations made by members of The Hollywood Reporter's THR 100 list — an annual ranking of the most powerful people in the entertainment industry — have gone to Harris' campaign, amounting to $73,580, according to Federal Election Commission data disclosures.

Joe Biden's presidential bid is in second place, bringing in $22,400, or 15 percent of the total 2020 donation pool. The campaigns of Sens. Amy Klobuchar, Kirsten Gillibrand and Cory Booker have received a similar share of the contributions, amounting to just over $10,000 each.

Not a single member of the THR 100 list donated so far to the campaigns of two of the Democratic front-runners, Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders, both of whom have targeted small-dollar contributions, FEC disclosures show. 

At this point in the 2020 federal election cycle, Discovery CEO David Zaslav has been the most generous donor, though none of the $200,000 he has contributed has gone to any of the presidential candidates — Zaslav has given $100,000 to House speaker Nancy Pelosi's political action committee and $89,400 to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

The next most generous donor has been Walt Disney Studios co-chairman Alan Horn, who has given more than $191,000, including maxed-out donations to Harris, Biden, Booker and Gillibrand, along with contributions to Democratic campaign organizations and Democratic Sens. Mark Warner and Gary Peters.

Director J.J. Abrams has contributed $159,600, including a donation for Harris and large donations for the DCCC and Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

Some Hollywood power players have opted to spread their wealth among the 2020 contenders, including Chris Meledandri of Illumination Entertainment, who has maxed-out to Harris, Biden, Gillibrand, Sen. Michael Bennet, Rep. Tulsi Gabbard and former cabinet secretary Julian Castro.

Chris Silbermann, managing director of ICM Partners, has taken a similar approach, donating so far to Harris, Biden, Booker, Gillibrand and Bennet, along with Pelosi's PAC.

Disney CEO Bob Iger has so far made six campaign donations totaling $49,500, including $35,500 to the DSCC.

Ahead of the midterm elections, 99.7 percent of 2018 campaign donations made by members of the THR entertainment power list went to Democratic campaigns and committees, with only Lorne Michaels, John Stankey and Bob Bakish giving to Republicans.

At this point in the cycle, not a single 2020 election campaign contribution from the pool of donors listed in the THR 100 has gone to a Republican candidate or organization.