The way casino magnate Sheldon Adelson remembers it, he and his wife, Miriam, met then-House Speaker Newt Gingrich in 1995 in the majestic Capitol Rotunda as they made their way through the building while lobbying for a bill to move the U.S. Embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

Nearly two decades later, Gingrich, on the campaign trail, has promised that his first executive order as president would be the embassy move, long a priority of ardent Israel supporters such as the Adelsons.

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The former House speaker is seeking the Republican presidential nomination.

It would also be a sweet jackpot for the Adelsons, who are the biggest patrons of Gingrich’s political career.

Perhaps no other major presidential candidate in recent times has had his fortunes based so squarely on the contributions of a single donor, as Gingrich has on Adelson, who has spent millions in support of Gingrich and his causes over the past five years. In a primary season dominated by the mega-spending of super PACs, Adelson’s efforts on Gingrich’s behalf provide a window into the expanding influence of the super-rich on American politics.

After putting up the seed money and ultimately $7.7 million between 2006 and 2010 for a nonprofit group that served as a precursor to Gingrich’s presidential campaign, Adelson, 78, an irascible Las Vegas billionaire, doubled down this month, giving $5 million to a political action committee run by former close aides to Gingrich.

“My motivation for helping Newt is simple and should not be mistaken for anything other than the fact that my wife Miriam and I hold our friendship with him very dear and are doing what we can as private citizens to support his candidacy,” Adelson, who is listed by Forbes as the eighth-wealthiest American, with a net worth of $21.5 billion, said in a prepared statement e-mailed to The Washington Post. He declined interview requests.

The most recent donation to Winning Our Future, a Gingrich-linked super PAC, fueled Gingrich’s resurgence before Saturday’s primary in South Carolina and bankrolled ads and a half-hour film painting rival Mitt Romney as a job-killing corporate raider. Adelson told associates that he will consider more donations if Gingrich fares well Saturday.

For Gingrich, the check links him even more closely to Adelson (pronounced ADD-el-son), an outspoken businessman known for aggressive tactics. His net worth has increased at least ninefold in the last decade. (The FBI and Securities and Exchange Commission are investigating his company, Las Vegas Sands, in connection with allegations that Adelson ordered an executive to bribe Chinese officials by putting them on the payroll. Adelson and company officials deny the allegations, which they say were first made by a disgruntled former employee.)

Adelson said the check to Gingrich was about fidelity. “Our means of support might be more than others are able to offer,” he said, “but like most Americans, words such as friendship and loyalty still mean something to us.”

Friends said Adelson and Gingrich share views on Israel, labor and free enterprise. In December, when Gingrich was riding atop the national GOP polls, Adelson was delighted.

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ramseytuell

1/27/2012 2:11 PM MST

At present we are sending 33% of our work to other countries. If we were to keep 18% of that here it would put most of that 14 million back to work. It is very important that we do it now. Workers feed our money Supply, pay taxes, and pay the wages of all those that have jobs in our government.
The President, in his state of The Union speech, addressed the fact that we are losing our skilled workers such as engineers, die makers, machinists, etc and along with them goes our ability to manufacture and build wealth in our country.
If I see any of the contenders for the Presidency, or the President and any of his staff, smiling and talking about rearranging the government offices to safe money, or shuffling papers and laws to improve the economy, I’m going to puke.

banicki

1/20/2012 1:33 PM MST

One dollar one vote.
Here is biggest problem of this years election. and no one is discussing it including the Times.
American politics is one of the few jobs where you are allowed to hunt for another job during 98% of normal working hours and continue to be paid for your present position. WE CANNOT LET THIS HAPPEN THIS TIME!
“Republicans hope Mr. Obama’s pronouncement that a full-year extension of the payroll tax cut was the last “must-do” piece of legislation for the White House will work in their favor, making them look as though they are trying to create jobs while Mr. Obama is busy campaigning.” Boehner Faces a Restive G.O.P. and New White House Attacks, Jennifer Steinhaurer, New York Times, January 14, 2011
In 2012 we have the following items that demand national attention: the presidential and congressional elections, the Afghan war, Iran building a nuclear weapon, high unemployment, a teetering economy and a national debt with no plan in place to solve it. These are just the items on the top shelf. Morehttp://goo.gl/mIWYc

Provincial

1/20/2012 9:13 AM MST

What is not mentioned in this article is the fact that Newt Gingrich did a 180 on his Israel v. Palestinians positions immediately after receiving the $1 million.
Newt sold himself to Adelson, he has been bought and paid for.

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Sheldon Adelson and Newt Gingrich: One gained clout from friendship, the other funding – The Washington Post

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