With Donald Trump’s massive fundraising operation as opposition, tech billionaires are aiming to help boost presumptive Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden. As reported by Vox, the billionaires are putting their cash behind “secret plans” that range from “nerdy political science experiments” to attempts to overhaul the Democratic Party’s “beleaguered data file.”
“They are pushing their favored, sometimes peculiar, fixes to a political ailment just like they might if on the board of a struggling startup,” the report reads.
Vox spoke to more than 20 donors and operatives about the alleged plans, which it claims are being carried out in secrecy with “minimal disclosure, scrutiny, or accountability.” According to the publication, four billionaires — LinkedIn founder Reid Hoffman, Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz, philanthropist and Steve Jobs’s widow Laurene Powell Jobs, and former Google CEO Eric Schmidt — have particularly ambitious plans.
Schmidt is reportedly investing money into improving the Democratic Party’s digital infrastructure, while Hoffman wants to make the party competitive with the Republican Party’s right-wing media apparatus that helped carry Trump to victory in 2016. According to Vox, Hoffman’s team is intent on creating partisan news sites under the guise of journalism. Along with Powell Jobs, Hoffman also invested into the political group, Acronym, which was recently caught up into the Iowa caucus controversy.
Moskovitz is investing in voter registration programs that allegedly helped Democrats in 2018. Per Vox, Moskovitz is data-driven and fond of randomized, controlled experiments. Notably, Moskovitz recently funded a Voto Latino experiment that examined pre- or post-roll videos and their influence on Google keyword searches used by low-propensity Latino voters — or those least likely to show up at the ballot box.
As noted by Vox, the relationship between the Democratic Party and Silicon Valley billionaires is more complicated than the one with standard Wall Street donors who often fund the Democratic Party.
“While Democratic megadonors on Wall Street tend to route their donations to the party, tech billionaires like to claim they are offering more than just a check — and they want to be more in control.”
Jane Kleeb, the chair of the Nebraska Democratic Party, said her issue with such Silicon Valley firebrands is that they don’t have a greater understanding of the party’s needs than her or anyone else leading the party.
“I don’t second-guess them, and I’m asking them not to second-guess us,” she said.
As The Inquisitr previously reported, Biden’s super PAC, Unite The Country, has received funding from a variety of donors from across the political spectrum. Notably, one such donor is billionaire Herbert Allen Jr., who funded the Republican Party’s efforts to prevent the reelection of former President Barack Obama.