Joe Ricketts

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J. Joe Ricketts (born 16 July 1941) is the founder, former CEO and former chairman of TD Ameritrade, a large online discount brokerage, based in Omaha, Nebraska. Ricketts also owns and operates several early stage companies, including DNAinfo.com, The American Film Company, High Plains Bison, and The Lodge at Jackson Fork Ranch. Ricketts also owns the Chicago Cubs baseball franchise.

JJ Ricketts and his two sons, Pete and Todd, are ultra right-wingers who actively fund right-wing candidates and even multi-million dollar smear campaigns against opponents.[1]

2012 Political Contributions

As of October 30th, Joe Ricketts has given 12.9 million dollars to various conservative super PACs, Republican Candidates, and other conservative organizations. These donations include:

  • $12,250,000 to 'Ending Spending Action Fund' under Hugo Enterprises. [2]
  • $500,000 to 'Campaign for Primary Accountability,' a Texas based anti-incumbent super PAC, under Hugo Enterprises. [3]
  • $100,000 to 'Restore Our Future,' a pro-Mitt Romney super PAC.
  • $90,000 to Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker during the 2012 Recall election. [4]
  • $15,500 to the National Republican Congressional Committee.
  • $2,500 to Libertarian Presidential Candidate Gary Johnson.

Smear campaigner

On May 17th, 2012 the New York Times exposed a proposed Rickert's backed advertising campaign entitled "The Defeat of Barrack Hussein Obama," which planned to recycle the Obama-Reverand Jeremiah Wright conspiracy. The 10 million dollar add campaign would have began airing prior to the Democratic National Convention. The plan for the add campaign was quoted as wanting to hire, "an extremely literate African-American," as spokesman and have that individual claim Mr. Obama fooled the nation by presenting himself as a "metro-sexual, black Abe Lincoln."[5]

The New York Times article effectively derailed the Rickett's race-based campaign.

Danny Schechter of Consortium News reports:

The recent proposal for Wall Street trader Joe Ricketts to recycle the alleged Obama-Wright conspiracy into a defamatory political-ad campaign spoke more to his advisers’ demagoguery than to any truth-based assessment. Had the New York Times not exposed it, this $10 million dollar race-based smear likely would have gone forward.[6]

External Resources

References

  1. Jim Rutenberg and Jeff Zeleny, Magnate Steps Into 2012 Fray on Wild Pitch, New York Times, 17 May 2012.
  2. Open Secrets Ending Spending Fund Donors Accessed 10/30/2012
  3. Open Secrets Campaign for Primary Accountability Donors Accessed 10/30/2012.
  4. scottwalkerwatch.org "A large majority of Walker’s Top 1% Recall campaign contributors were not from Wisconsin" Accessed 10/30/2012.
  5. Zeleny, Jeff."G.O.P. ‘Super PAC’ Weighs Hard-Line Attack on Obama"Accessed October 30th, 2012.
  6. Danny Schechter, The Politics of Mythology, Consortium News, 23 May 2012
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