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Momentum for Silicon Valley’s Never Trump movement heats up

TechCrunch TechCrunch 6/06/2016 Sarah Buhr

As two Senators battled in the 2008 Democratic primaries, several Silicon Valley CEOs and investors poured early financing into one particular candidate — Hillary Clinton.

Chris Sacca, an early investor in Twitter, Uber, and Instagram also bet early on Clinton, contributing to her campaign in July 2006. Bill Gates and Sheryl Sandberg both contributed to Clinton in 2007, before becoming major donors to President Barack Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign. And Carl Ichan, the investor who has endorsed presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump, was previously a Hillary fan — he contributed to her Senatorial campaign in 2004.

But Silicon Valley seems to have cooled on Clinton.

Clinton has yet to net donations from many CEOs and investors, even a few who backed her 2008 campaign. Sacca, who donated $100,000 to Clinton’s campaign in March 2016, is a notable exception, as is Tesla and SpaceX CEO Elon Musk, who began contributing to Clinton’s campaign in May 2015 after initially backing Marco Rubio.

Header – The People’s Bern {??}

At the top tiers of tech, Bernie Sanders seems as untouchable as Trump. But unlike Trump, Sanders has garnered massive donations from tech workers — approximately $6 million, nearly three times as much as Clinton, who pulled in $2.6 million from the tech industry, according to Crowdpac {OR INSERT OUR OWN NUMBER HERE JUST BASED ON SV}

Contrary to Silicon Valley’s liberal reputation, there are quite a few billionaire Republican sympathizers at the top – a large majority of whom gave heavily to the RNC and right-wing candidates in the last election cycle.

But this is a crazy presidential election with a nominee whom many in GOP believe to be an absolute nutjob. Now the right in Silicon Valley – and throughout the nation – seem more willing than ever to lean a little left to ensure Donald J. Trump doesn’t end up running the free world.

Many of Silicon Valley’s titans of capital gave to the likes of Mitt Romney, Ted Cruz, and Carly Fiorina in years past. Marco Rubio seemed to be the favorite before he dropped out of the race – pulling in $X from various VC’s, founders and other leaders in startup land.

Compare that to a mere $30,556 to Trump, according to data gathered from the FEC on donors in Silicon Valley. Most of the donors worked in real estate, were self-employed or otherwise not in tech.

We counted a grand total of five tech industry Trump donors in the Federal Elections Commission database from San Francisco to San Jose – a retired NASA nurse, a software engineer in Palo Alto, an admin assistant at Genentech, one VP of engineering at Yahoo and a man claiming to work as a tech manager at Uber. Up and down the valley, Trump has been able to pull in $621.67 to his campaign, according to the FEC. Peanuts compared to Sanders and Clinton.

Of course, billionaires have a habit of playing both sides and plenty donated to Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton in 2007-2008.

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