Steve Cohen, the billionaire hedge fund manager and founder of Point72 Asset Management, has donated $US1 million the “super PAC” supporting New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R), according to government filings.
His wife, Alexandra, who runs the Cohen family charitable organisation, has also donated $US1 million to the group, America Leads.
The donations come as good news for Christie, who announced his campaign last month to the sound of crickets from deep-pocketed Wall Street donors.
Billionaires who had supported Christie financially in the past — like Daniel Loeb, founder of Third Point Partners, and Paul Singer, founder of Elliott Management — have yet to declare their support.
And then there are those who have defected from Christie’s camp, like New York Jets owner Woody Johnson. He has declared his support for Jeb Bush, and records show he donated to the Right to Rise super PAC supporting Bush.
There are a few Christie loyalists in billionaire land, though, like Home Depot founder Ken Langone.
“The guy every day confirms in my mind why I think he’d make a great president,” Langone said on “Wall Street Week” last month. “He tells it like it is. Three weeks ago he talked about entitlements … the third rail of politics. Now Jeb Bush is talking about entitlements.”
Langone has given $US100,000 to the Christie-supporting super PAC so far, records show.
The only other donation to America Leads comparable to the Cohens’ was from Nevada’s Winecup-Gamble Ranch Inc. So far, the super PAC has raised $US11 million, according to the group’s filings. That’s chump change compared to the more than $US100 million that the super PAC supporting Bush has raised.
Christie is currently fighting for one of the last two spots in next week’s primetime Republican primary debate, which will feature the top 10 candidates in an average of national polling.