By M.D. Kittle Wisconsin Reporter
Morgan Freeman isn’t dead.
And his wallet is wide open for Barack Obama.
Last month, the Academy Award-winning actor who has narrated everything from prison escapes to penguin odysseys to the running movie in my head suffered the Mark Twain effect – The report of his death was an exaggeration.
Some schmuck on Facebook – yes that universe is expansive – started a rumor that Freeman was dead.
We all know now that he isn’t, including the cadre of “deathers” who want to see the “Bucket List” star’s death certificate.
No, Freeman is alive, and his campaign giving to liberal causes is well.
Tops on the list, good old unfair and mostly unbalanced Bill Maher. The comedian, I guess, and host of “Real Time with Bill Maher,” pumped in all but 1 percent of his $1,010,000 in liberal giving to Priorities.
Fourth on the list, just behind director J.J. Abrams and his $362,000 to liberal causes, is professional wrestling magnate Vince McMahon and wife, Linda, who have given $360,360 to conservative campaigns, 41 percent to Romney-supporting Super Pac Restore Our Future.
Priorities USA Action had its best month of fundraising in August, collecting $10.1 million, more than twice as much as the group has raised in any month but one, according to OpenSecrets, a database put together by the nonprofit, nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics, which, tracks campaign finance.
Priorities spent $9.5 million, and had $4.8 million in the bank at the end of August.
It’s probably no surprise Obama has benefited most from Hollywood’s generosity.
Maybe it’s a tad shocking to find out just how much celebrity worship for Obama there is among celebrities. The president hauled in $635,304 compared to just $28,500 for his Republican rival Mitt Romney.
Obama picked up 181 individual celebrity contributions, from actors and athletes to divas and fashionistas.
His top individual donor, Melanie Griffith. Yeah, it’s been a long time since “The Bonfire of the Vanities,” but Melanie still had at least $5,950 in the bank to spend on hope and change. Director/writer Cameron Crowe came in second, at $5,750, and a bunch of celebs, such as Will Smith, George Clooney and Steven Spielberg each chipping in $5,000.
Producer Jerry Bruckheimer is the lone donor to Mitt Romney in the $2,501 or better category, cutting a check for $5,000. Chuck Norris chipped in $2,500 for Newt Gingrich, and Ben Stein – Buhler! Buhler! – gave $1,500 to GOP presidential primary also ran U.S. Michele Bachmann, R-Minnesota.
While Hollywood may not have a crush on Romney, big business does.
Restore Our Future, pulled in just more than $7 million last month, according OpenSecrets. American Crossroads, the Karl Rove-connected super PAC that has spent millions supporting Romney as well, raised $9.4 million while spending $6.9 million, OpenSecrets.org noted.
But while liberals have charged that industrial brothers David and Charles Koch, Las Vegas tycoon Sheldon Adelson and other big business magnates are trying to buy this election for Republicans, there’s a lot of liberal money pumping up Obama’s re-election campaign.
Hollywood giving, however, may have a bigger impact than big business in this election. It’s from Tinseltown, really, where more and more political opinion dressed up as entertainment is produced — and more and more Americans are buying what these peddlers are selling.
Maybe Morgan Freeman, God rest his wallet, can offer his voice to that Hollywood hit, “The Obama Show.”