Sheldon Adelson, Latke Seeker
The donor speaks out in a rare interview
Last night, Politico posted an interview with casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, who (as you may have heard) has influenced and will continue to influence American politics in unprecedented ways.
The interview provided some background on Adelson–a beguiling figure to many–including some insights about his business, his views on the Obama administration, and what it means to be the go-to moneyman in American politics. There are no real surprises here, although a tidbit about how when Adelson was 12 “he spent $200 to buy the exclusive rights to sell newspapers outside the employee’s entrance of a Boston department store” is, depending on your view of the man, a little bit frightening or extremely impressive. But my favorite part was his conversation with Mitt Romney, in which Adelson cleared the air about what he might want in exchange for the roughly $75 million (and counting) he has given to the campaign. He told Romney:
“I want to tell you something: I’m not looking for an ambassadorship. I’m not looking for anything, except if I’m fortunate enough to be invited to another [White House] Hanukkah party, I want two potato pancakes, because last time I was there, they ran out of them.” He explained that he went “to all the Hanukkah parties for the eight years of Bush … but the last time I was there, they ran out of … latkes.”
If you’re fond of math, that’s two latkes at about $37.5 million a pop.