Trump has a long history of assisting Democrats

April 29, 2011

By Peter Hamby, CNN Political Reporter

Washington (CNN) — When it comes to political contributions, Donald Trump has no problem spreading the wealth around.

While the real estate titan and television star professes to be serious about seeking the Republican presidential nomination in 2012, his long history of steering money to Democratic candidates has largely escaped notice amid the headline-grabbing din of birth certificate talk and his surprisingly high poll numbers.

For the record, Trump has given $541,650 to federal Democratic candidates and fundraising committees going back to 1990, according to data from the Center for Responsive Politics. That compares with $429,450 he’s contributed to federal Republican candidates and committees over the same period.

He’s handed out money to Democratic statewide candidates as well. In 2009, for instance, Trump cut a $25,000 check to former Democratic National Committee chairman Terry McAuliffe for his unsuccessful 2009 Virginia gubernatorial bid.

Nevertheless, Trump the Republican made a splash Wednesday during a daylong tour of the first-in-the-nation primary state of New Hampshire.

Arriving in a helicopter and riding in limousine with an entourage of well-suited aides in tow, Trump spent the day meeting with conservative activists and taking credit for the surprise release of President Obama’s long-form birth certificate.

But the morning after the media frenzy, one leading conservative figure, Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul, sought to remind Granite State Republicans of how generous Trump has been with his pocketbook.

“I’ve come to New Hampshire today because I’m very concerned,” Paul joked at a GOP breakfast in Merrimack County on Thursday, according to The New York Times. “I want to see the original long-form certificate of Donald Trump’s Republican registration.”

Paul, who was visiting the state to lay some early groundwork for a possible 2016 presidential bid, ribbed Trump for giving money to a pair of high-profile Democrats: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and New York Rep. Charlie Rangel.

“I’m going to believe it when I see his embossed seal to his Republican registration,” Paul said.

Michael Cohen, an adviser to Trump, tried to explain the thinking behind his boss’s political donations during a March visit to Iowa, which holds the first contest in the president nominating process.

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