"Clinton Cash," the top-selling book which investigated various financial dealings made by Hillary Clinton and her family and inspired many of the attacks that Donald Trump issued in the presidential campaign season, was put together by a nonprofit organization. That organization, however, received most of its funding from a single source: billionaire hedge fund manager Robert Mercer, the co-CEO of New York-based Renaissance Technologies. Mercer, a longtime supporter of Trump, Breitbart News, and other related organizations, had a key role in the publishing of the book.
$1.7 Million Donation
Mercer provided $1.7 million out of the total $2.6 million in funding that the Government Accountability Institute required to produce the book. This information was revealed in an Internal Revenue Service document that was first obtained by Bloomberg. The Government Accountability Institute, which was founded by Stephen Bannon, the chief strategist for the Trump Administration, has ties to Breitbart as well. Since his appointment, Bannon has come under fire for his ties to the so-called "alt-right," which many have linked to Nazi activity.
Tax Returns Revealed the Involvement
Tax returns filed by Mercer's family trust, the Mercer Family Foundation, late in 2016 revealed the donation. The returns showed total grants of $24.5 million for the year 2015, including the $1.7 million in question to the Government Accountability Institute. Mercer has not responded to the Bloomberg report on his involvement, declining to comment via a spokesperson.
Peter Schweizer, the author of "Clinton Cash," is also the president of Florida-based Government Accountability Institute. The book was published in 2015 by HarperCollins, debuting at number 2 on the New York Times bestseller list at the same time that Clinton's campaign was beginning to ramp up. The content of the book is harshly critical of Clinton's speaking fees and a number of the sources of charitable contributions that she and members of her family have accepted, both from corporations and from individuals.
That Mercer was involved with GAI previously is widely known. However, his deep involvement with and support for "Clinton Cash" is revealing. Working together with Bannon, Mercer aided in the Breitbart News efforts to "weaponize" stories through investigation and subsequent reporting. Bannon has also advised Mercer and his family, producing the film adaptation of "Clinton Cash" in 2016 prior to his joining Trump's efforts to become president. Between personal involvement and that of his family, Mercer spent upwards of $2 million on advertising for Trump during the election season, all of it done via a super-PAC. GAI attempts to present itself as a nonpartisan watchdog group, and Schweizer spoke on CNN after the election to indicate that Trump will face corruption charges if he fails to properly divest from his holdings before assuming office.