Sen. Joe Manchin’s efforts to winnow down key parts of Joe Biden’s agenda appear to have earned him clout with a like-minded constituency: Republican billionaires.
“I’m going to have one of the biggest fundraisers I’ve ever had for him,” Langone told CNBC. “He’s special. He’s precious. He’s a great American.”
Langone is one of the GOP’s most prominent rainmakers, famous for pouring money into Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, he has also contributed to some Democrats in the past, including former New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (N.Y.).
Manchin’s campaign and Senate office did not respond to requests for comment.
Manchin has also received public praise from Nelson Peltz, a billionaire investor, who previously hosted fundraisers for Donald Trump in his Florida home. In an October interview, Peltz told CNBC that he speaks with Manchin every week and offers him words of encouragement.
Langone’s announcement comes as Manchin and Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D) work to reduce the scale and scope of Biden’s $1.8 trillion social spending plan. Manchin has specifically opposed programs designed to shift American businesses from fossil fuels to clean energy, while owning millions of dollars in coal industry stock. He has also criticized a Democratic plan to tax billionaires as divisive and has opposed raising the corporate tax above 25 percent.
Sinema has herself received an influx of cash from GOP megadonors. Fundraising reports filed in October showed that big-name Republican donors, including billionaire businessmen and private equity executives, had contributed thousands of dollars to her campaign.