When Sheldon Adelson was alive, he was famous for spending hundreds of millions of dollars to boost Republican candidates in federal elections. He and his wife Miriam disclosed spending $98 million in 2012, $5 million in 2014, $81 million in 2016, $123 million in 2018 and $216 million in 2020. But Adelson, who was the richest casino magnate in the world, died in January. And now it’s unclear whether his widow, Miriam, will continue doling out quite so much money.
Since her husband’s death, Miriam Adelson, who is worth an estimated $29.5 billion, has disclosed just one federal contribution, a $5,000 donation to a PAC started by Nikki Haley, the former South Carolina governor who served as Donald Trump’s ambassador to the United Nations. Haley’s PAC is supposed to be focused on electing conservative candidates in the 2022 midterms.
Even for a year without many federal races, $5,000 isn’t much for the Adelsons. For years, Sheldon Adelson earned massive amounts of cash from Las Vegas Sands’ dividends. And as a couple, Sheldon and Miriam Adelson donated more than $100,000 every off-year dating back at least a decade, according to Federal Election Commission data. Two years ago, in 2019, they spent more than $2 million. Last year, with the White House, Senate and House all up for grabs, they broke their own records and spent nearly $220 million.
A spokesperson for Adelson did not respond to a request for comment about her contributions.