Liberal billionaire Tom Steyer, a friend and donor to Obama and Clinton, is hiring an army of more than 50 political operatives in a major campaign to help Democrats get control of the U.S. House this year and “remove Trump from power.”
“Need to Impeach” Founder Steyer, 60, announced Thursday that he is hiring a team of 50 political and communications strategists to coordinate his campaign. While Steyer launched his $20 million campaign to impeach Trump last year, he has now promised to double that amount and also spend $30 million on 2018 House races through his super PAC, NextGen America.
“The team, including 50 staff members, is adding thousands of new supporters to the impeachment movement each day, creating a digital army of activists who are mobilizing to take back the House of Representatives in the 2018 election and remove Trump from power,” read a Thursday statement from “Need to Impeach.”
Separately, House Democrats announced Thursday that they plan to target as many as 101 Republican-held congressional seats this year, the most in a decade.
Steyer, who was once considered for secretary of energy during the Obama administration, spent $10 million opposing Trump’s successful tax-reform package. He contributed about $90 million to Democratic Party candidates and causes in 2016.
Steyer was an Obama fundraiser during the 2008 presidential election, collecting $50,000 to put the future president into office. He also lobbied Obama to block the Keystone XL pipeline.
Obama and Rep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., attended a big-money fundraiser at Steyer’s home overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco in 2015. More than 50 wealthy Democratic donors attended the event.
The climate-activist billionaire hosted fundraisers for former Democratic Party nominee Hillary Clinton and paid millions toward ads, canvassing and voter turnout efforts to help her.
In fact, John Podesta, former chief of staff to Bill Clinton, has had a close friendship with Steyer for many years. Podesta served as Steyer’s adviser.
Rumors are now flying about Steyer’s possible 2020 White House ambitions.
“Our campaign has entered a new phase of social impact,” Steyer said in a statement. “The team that I have put together will lead one of the largest political engagement initiatives in recent memory, mobilizing supporters to elect public officials who are willing to put country over party. The Need to Impeach team gets it done. They are practical, and they are consumed with representing the will of the American people.”
Steyer has called Trump a “clear and present danger” and claimed the president is mentally unstable.
On Twitter, President Trump has called Steyer a loser, tweeting, “Wacky & totally unhinged Tom Steyer, who has been fighting me and my Make America Great Again agenda from the beginning, never wins elections!”
Nonetheless, even Obama’s former top adviser, David Axelrod, has condemned Steyer’s campaign to impeach Trump, saying the effort is too much, too soon.
In November, Axelrod tweeted: “Steyer impeachment ads seem to me more of a vanity project than a call to action. It is – at least at this point – an unhelpful message. If imepachment becomes a political tool, it will be as damaging to our democracy as the degradations @realDonaldTrump has inflicted on it.”
Steyer’s organization, NextGen, has donated grants to several refugee and immigration organizations and to the Council on American-Islamic Relations. In 2016, it contributed $20 million to the For Our Future PAC, which donated more than $3.3 million to Clinton’s campaign and spent nearly $3.5 million to oppose Trump.
NextGen also gave $150,000 to MoveOn.org and $250,000 to Color of Change, both of which are key players in WND’s list of “Top 10 leftist groups wreaking havoc against the U.S. and sabotaging Trump.”
One “Need to Impeach” staffer is speechwriter and communications strategist Dave Bloom, who is a former undergraduate fellow of FactCheck.org and congressional intern for Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz.