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Las Vegas Sands billionaire Adelson and wife give US$20m to Republican efforts to hold House

[CHICAGO] Billionaire casino owner Sheldon Adelson and his wife, Miriam, delivered US$20 million to help Republicans try to hold the US House in the Nov 6 election, adding to the more than US$55 million they previously gave to bolster the GOP's midterm campaign efforts.

The Las Vegas Sands Corp chairman and chief executive officer and his wife were among the big-dollar donors who lavished millions on political committees during the third quarter ahead of the first major political test of Donald Trump's presidency, disclosures filed by Monday night with the Federal Election Commission show.

Their donation went to the Congressional Leadership Fund, a super political action committee aligned with House Speaker Paul Ryan. The latest contributions followed previous donations of US$30 million to the CLF and US$25 million to the Senate Leadership Fund, another super PAC.

The two parties and their allies are furiously raising and spending money as the campaign for control of Congress enters the home stretch. Democrats are threatening to overturn the Republican majority in the House, while Republicans are positioned to hold on to control in the Senate. The election will determine whether Mr Trump can continue to push through his legislative agenda.

The Adelsons gave US$82.5 million to conservative causes and candidates in the 2015-16 election cycle, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. That ranked them second in the US for individual donors, behind liberal billionaire Tom Steyer, for that cycle.

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The Adelsons also gave US$2 million to ESAFUND, a super PAC that's part of a group of organizations funded by TD Ameritrade Holding Co founder Joe Ricketts. The group had US$2.1 million in the bank at the start of October, after spending US$1 million to opposed Democrat Beto O'Rourke in the Texas Senate race.

Monday was the deadline for committees that file third quarter reports with the FEC, including all House and Senate campaigns and some super PACs.


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