Yesterday, the campaign of Congressman Joaquin Castro (brother of current presidential candidate Julián) published the names of dozens of San Antonians who had already given the maximum amount allowed under federal law to the re-election campaign of Donald Trump.
This sparked outrage from Republicans and some in the media who compared the publication of the names to “doxxing” the people who had donated to Trump. The New York Times’ Maggie Haberman called it “dangerous.”
When you donate to political candidates, you’re giving the Federal Election Commission permission to publish your name and occupation, which they do on their website as part of campaign finance data. It is not doxxing. But not everyone knows how to access that information, so we’ve decided to put together a guide for you to find out who in your community has given thousands of dollars to Donald Trump, or really any other political candidate.
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1. Go to fec.gov/data. You should see the screen below; either you can look up all contributions to a given candidate, or you can look up individual names to see if they’ve donated in this cycle or in the past. For our purposes today, we’re just going to click on the name of, oh, I dunno, Trump, Donald J.
2. Once you click through, you’ll be taken to a screen which allows you to toggle which election cycle you’re looking at. We want the 2020 election and “all years,” meaning everything our candidate has raised since 2017. Then click on “browse receipts.”
3. When you pop through to the next screen, you’ll be able to narrow your search down using the filters. (The election cycle and political committee are automatically toggled.) You can find who in your area is bankrolling the campaign of a man who is responsible for this, and this, and this, and this, and this, by simply plugging in your zip code or the name of the city in which you reside.
For our purposes, I plugged in New York, NY, and found dozens of people who’ve given the max to Trump. Here’s one: Woody Johnson, the co-owner of the New York Jets and Trump’s Ambassador to the United Kingdom. Wow!
(Note: Clicking on “open original image” will show you the original itemized receipt from the FEC. That, unlike Castro’s tweet, shows their home addresses.)
To mix up the cities a little bit, here’s D.C., which, in addition to the maximum contributions from individual donors, includes a whopping $165,702 from the law firm Jones Day.
And here is Los Angeles. And yes, that is former California Gov. Pete Wilson right at the top of the list.
4. It’s likely that if you live in a semi-major city, you’re going to have a bunch of Trump donors to comb through. So if you just want to see the big boys, you can go back to the spreadsheet and click on the “amount” tab so the arrow next to it is pointing down.
That way, you’ll see the biggest donations first. And if you want to see if one of those major donors had given the max, all you need to do is look at the “year to date”; if it says $5,600.00, like Woody Johnson’s above, then they gave the max.
Hope this helps!