Over the years, wealthy real estate developer Preston Caruthers has given $216,580 to candidates in Virginia elections, of which 81% ($176,550) went to Republicans and 16% ($35,030) went to Democrats. Those Republicans include some of the “worst of the worst,” such as xenophobe and demagogue Corey Stewart, climate science denier and raging homophobe Ken Kookinelli, Jim “Drove Virginia Into the Ditch” Gilmore, Bob “Pat Robertson” McDonnell, Bill Bolling, Barbara Comstock, Dave Albo, Jeff Frederick, the RPV, etc. Great, huh?
Meanwhile, on the federal level, Caruthers has given heavily to right-wing Republicans like: George Allen, Lisa Marie Cheney, John Thune, Frank Wolf, Bob Goodlatte, Eric Cantor, Scott Rigell, Keith Fimian, George W. Bush, John McCain, the RPV, RNC, etc. Get the picture? That’s right, it doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure this one out: the guy’s a HUGE Republican donor.
Except…he occasionally gives to a Democrat, such as FOD (“friend of developers”) Dick Saslaw. This year, though, Caruthers has decided that the token Democratic recipient of his largesse will be 31st Senate district candidate Barbara Favola, to the tune of $5,000. Weird. Even weirder, Caruthers is also giving to the presumptive Republican nominee in this race, the super-wealthy (i.e., doesn’t really need Caruthers’ money) Caren Merrick. On second thought, it’s not weird at all: clearly, Caruthers is covering his bets here, since other than his super-conservative ideology, what he REALLY cares about is his business interests (real estate development), and which politicians would be best at protecting those interests. Apparently, this year, he’s decided that either FOD Barbara Favola or FOD Caren Merrick would fit that bill in the 31st Senate district. To me, that’s highly revealing information, as you’d assume Caruthers – in spite of being wildly misguided in his political beliefs – would know what’s in his own self interest, and in his business’ self interest.