The four super-PACs preparing to give a $31 million boost to the presidential hopes of Texas Senator Ted Cruz represent the latest twist in the infiltration of big money in politics—and a way for wealthy donors to have an even more direct say in how their money is spent. One of the constellation of committees first reported Wednesday by Bloomberg appears to be underwritten by Republican mega-donor Robert Mercer and his family. Campaign lawyers said the arrangement is unlike anything they’ve ever seen before. “It’s something to watch,” said Jason Abel of Steptoe & Johnson, who is not involved with the super-PACs. Abel and other lawyers speculated that multiple committees, all of which are named some form of “Keep the Promise,” were created to satisfy the whims of individual donors.
“It appears that setting up multiple super-PACs would allow maximum flexibility for certain donors to push their issues,” Abel said. The Campaign Legal Center’s Paul Ryan suggested that the arrangement creates “different pots of money for donors to fund different things.”
A strategist involved with the committees, who asked not to be named because he’s not authorized to speak publicly, corroborated those theories. Each of the super-PACs—Keep the Promise and three “sub-super-PACs” dubbed Keep the Promise I, Keep the Promise II and Keep the Promise III—will be controlled by a different donor family, and will likely develop different specialities, such as data mining, television advertising and polling, the strategist said.