Billionaire financier Robert Mercer directly defied Donald Trump’s endorsement of Cindy Hyde-Smith by providing a $500K donation to a pro Chris McDaniel PAC to be spent in the final days of the campaign. Both Hyde-Smith and McDaniel are vying for a US Senate seat in a special election.
Ten days ago, Y’all Politics had documented the expenditure made after the filing deadline, but it was only in the last 48 hours that we found out who in fact made the contribution.
Mercer had previously given to Remember Mississippi, but this was before Trump made his endorsement of Hyde-Smith on August 23rd. The PAC in its most recent filing showed $502,000.00 in contributions. $23,319.54 cash on hand at the beginning of the filing period, and $33,804.31 at the end.
Mercer has made similar plays in senate races in 2018. He put $500,000 also on Kelli Ward in the Arizona Republican primary. However, Trump did not make an endorsement in that race until after Ward had been defeated by Martha McSally.
Again, for someone who had pledged devotion to the Trump agenda, seeing such a public break from President Trump by the Mercer family is unexpected.
…Cindy has voted for our Agenda in the Senate 100% of the time and has my complete and total Endorsement. We need Cindy to win in Mississippi!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 23, 2018
To spend the new Mercer funds, the Remember MS PAC released another ad on cable television as part of their $400,000 ad buy, which runs through the election. The ad, entitled “Bull” is highly critical of Cindy Hyde-Smith.
There are many anti-Trump threads that have run through the Remember Mississippi PAC. Mercer’s money was at the tip of the spear for Ted Cruz in his primary battle against Trump. As we’ve noted on several occasions, the “Keep the Promise” PAC featured much of the same organization and vendors as Remember Mississippi including its press coordinator, Kristina Hernandez.
They ran anti-Trump ads like this one.