Future45

In October 2015, the Wall Street Journal reported that Republican operatives and donors were launching a Super PAC called Future45 and an associated non-profit called 45Committee “to take aim at Democratic presidential frontrunner Hillary Clinton.”[1] Future45’s president is Brian O. Walsh, a previous employee of the Crossroads-linked group American Action Network.[2] Its chair, Ron Weiser, is a former Republican National Committee finance chairman.[3]

Walsh says that Clinton’s “integrity, her honesty, her judgment and her performance will be litigated.”[4] Senior officials with the groups told the Journal that it will “complement work already being done by outside organizations that back Republican candidates, including American Crossroads, America Rising and entities founded by billionaire industrialists Charles and David Koch.”[5] Prominent Republican billionaires “including hedge-fund billionaires Ken Griffin and Paul Singer and the family of TD Ameritrade founder Joe Ricketts” have pledged to donate to the groups.[6] Griffin and Singer have each given $250,000, while the Ricketts-backed ESA Fund Super PAC has given $175,000.

Future45 aired its first ad in late October 2015, claiming that Clinton was “responsible for a disaster” as Secretary of State.[7] It later aired ads about Bernie Sanders that, per Dave Weigel of the Washington Post, “serve dual roles. They ‘attack’ Sanders, and point to how he could be defined in a general election. They also remind Democrats of the issues where Sanders agree with them most.”[8] The group presumably believes that Clinton would be a stronger general election candidate than Sanders.

As of March 31, 2016, the group reported $305,493 cash on hand after raising $1.36 million since its inception.[9] It has not reported any independent expenditures since the end of February 2016.

[1]New GOP Groups Taking Aim at Hillary Clinton.” Patrick O’Connor and Rebecca Ballhaus, The Wall Street Journal, 10/27/15

[2]Politico Playbook.” Mike Allen and Daniel Lippman, Politico, 10/28/15

[3]New GOP Groups Taking Aim at Hillary Clinton.” Patrick O’Connor and Rebecca Ballhaus, The Wall Street Journal, 10/27/15

[4]New GOP Groups Taking Aim at Hillary Clinton.” Patrick O’Connor and Rebecca Ballhaus, The Wall Street Journal, 10/27/15

[5]New GOP Groups Taking Aim at Hillary Clinton.” Patrick O’Connor and Rebecca Ballhaus, The Wall Street Journal, 10/27/15

[6]New GOP Groups Taking Aim at Hillary Clinton.” Patrick O’Connor and Rebecca Ballhaus, The Wall Street Journal, 10/27/15

[7]Clinton targeted in ad from group tied to Koch brothers.” Julie Bykowicz, The Associated Press, 11/6/15

[8]Hedge fund-friendly Super PACs keep attacking Sanders – sort of.” David Weigel, The Washington Post, 02/19/16

[9]Future45 – FEC Form 3X.” Federal Election Commission, 03/31/16, p. 2