Days before launch, GOP convention asks Adelson for $6 million

Organizers turn to casino mogul to make up shortfall after sponsors withdraw pledges over Donald Trump

Sheldon Adelson, 2014 (Ethan Miller/Getty Images, via JTA)
Sheldon Adelson, 2014 (Ethan Miller/Getty Images, via JTA)

WASHINGTON — The Republican Party convention is asking Sheldon Adelson to cover a $6-million shortfall triggered by sponsors walking out over the nominee, Donald Trump.

Politico reported Thursday that the appeal to the casino magnate came July 12, just six days before the July 18 launch of the convention in Cleveland. The convention has raised $58 million of its projected $64-million cost.

Adelson is a major pro-Israel giver and a Republican who has pledged to spend tens of millions of dollars to help elect Trump.

The letter from the convention’s host committee lists among donors who have withdrawn their pledges David Koch at $1 million, FedEx at $500,000, Visa at $100,000, Pepsi at $500,000 and Coca-Cola at $1 million.

Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally at the Sharonville Convention Center in Cincinnati, Ohio, Wednesday, July 6, 2016. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
US Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally in Cincinnati, Ohio, July 6, 2016. (AP/John Minchillo)

The organizers bluntly admit that Trump and his controversies have led to the shortfall.

“Over the past couple months, negative publicity around our potential nominee resulted in a considerable number of pledges backing out from their commitments,” Politico quotes the letter as saying. “We would greatly appreciate if you would consider a $6,000,000 contribution to the Cleveland 2016 Host Committee to help us cross the finish line.”

Coca-Cola was among the companies targeted by a call to boycott the convention because of Trump’s broadsides against Mexicans, Muslims and women. The coalition of groups calling for the boycott, Color of Change, includes a Jewish social action group, Bend the Arc. Coca Cola would not confirm or deny if the activism led to its decision to pull out.

Politico was unable to obtain comment from the host committee or from Adelson.

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