Billionaire environmentalist Tom Steyer is using his vast wealth to purchase the Democratic Party’s platform on climate change, as well as overturn constitutional checks on power, according to a report from an environmental legal group.
The Energy and Environment Legal Institute published a report Monday showing Steyer is using tens of millions of dollars in donations to environmental groups, candidates and political parties in an effort to make the U.S. coal-free.
Steyer, who amassed the bulk of his wealth as a hedge fund manager, has transitioned from taking out millions in advertisements, which he tried in to 2014 with little success, to shoveling millions in donations to political candidates in an effort to cajole them into doing his bidding. His donations are contingent on the candidates accepting his global warming agenda, according to the report.
Steyer donated millions during the 2014 elections in an effort to stymie Republicans and conservatives in Colorado, Iowa, Michigan and New Hampshire statewide elections. Democrats were able to hold on to Senate seats in New Hampshire and Michigan, but Republicans took Colorado and Iowa.
Steyer and his political action group, NextGen Climate Action, spent about $20.7 million in independent expenditures in 2014, mostly opposing Republican candidates. He has spent more than $13 million so far this election year, according to OpenSecrets.org.
Steyer funded the Democratic National Committee, according to E&E Legal’s report, and the purchase of the Democratic National Committee’s 2016 campaign platform on climate change and renewable energy. The DNC, the report states, “adopted the Steyer agenda word for word.”