While real estate mogul Donald Trump is making most of the headlines in the presidential campaign, it’s Hillary Clinton and Jeb Bush who dominate among candidates when it comes to fundraising. HoopsHype research shows that’s also true if we consider donations from people involved in the NBA only. It’s still very early in the process, but pretty much every NBA dollar donated so far has gone to the Clinton or Bush campaigns.
Pelicans owner Tom Benson is the only one donating to two different candidates – Bush and Bobby Jindal, governor of Lousiana since 2008. Not a single active NBA player has donated to a presidential candidate yet. Caron Butler gave money to the Democratic National Committee last June, though.
The Milwaukee Bucks spent more money lobbying the Wisconsin Legislature than any other organization during the first half of the year, as the NBA team was pushing for approval of a new basketball arena. A report released Friday by the state elections board, which oversees lobbying, showed the Bucks spent just over $482,000 on lobbying through June. The next highest was the Wisconsin Hospital Association at nearly $379,000. The Bucks’ lobbying paid off. The Legislature, on bipartisan votes, ultimately approved spending $250 million in taxpayer money on a new stadium for the team. Gov. Scott Walker signed the measure into law this month. The amount spent by the Bucks doesn’t include lobbying on the arena bill in July, when it passed both houses. Those figures will be reported in January.
Cuban actually considered selling his Mavericks in 2006, at the peak of Dirk Nowitzki’s powers, as he was despondent over the state of the NBA’s referee crew. The Dallas Morning News pointed out that bit of information in its transcription of the podcast on Monday night. Here’s Cuban: “There’s still a lot of room for improvement but I think transparency makes a huge difference. I think the biggest change that’s going to happen that (NBA commissioner Adam Silver) has really started to push through is in recruiting and training.