Robert Mercer and Rebekah Mercer attend the 2017 TIME 100 Gala at Jazz at Lincoln Center on April 25, 2017 in New York City.
Patrick McMullan | Getty Images
In the run-up to the 2020 elections, the financier Robert Mercer-led family cut back on investments in conservative causes it funded over the past five years.
The shift came as Mercer began to distance himself from President Donald Trump and larger parts of the Republican Party. Mercer, who was once the co-CEO of hedge fund giant Renaissance Technologies, and his daughter Rebekah gave very little to Trump's offer for re-election after appearing as some of his best financial backers in the 2016 election.
The Mercer Family Foundation donated just over $ 1.4 million to external causes, with the bulk of it going to the dark money group known as the Donors Trust, according to the nonprofit's new 2019 tax return. Nonprofit 990 returns are released one year after their coverage date, and the information from the Foundation's new tax return was yet to be reported.
The two Mercers are listed as directors for the foundation. Robert Mercer's other two daughters, Jennifer and Heather, are also referred to as directors.
That $ 1.4 million represents a decrease in contributions from the Mercer family of over 90% year over year. In 2018, the Family Foundation donated a little over $ 12 million to often conservative organizations, including $ 500,000 to the Government Accountability Institute [GAI], a think tank founded by conservative investigator Peter Schweizer and former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, was founded.
A representative from Robert and Rebekah Mercer did not respond to a request for comment.
It's not like the family didn't have the money to fund conservative organizations that wanted to make an impact during the 2020 two-year election cycle. The 2020 release itself won't be released until next year.
The most recent release of 990 shows that the fair value of all of the foundation's assets was nearly $ 35 million over the past year. Robert Mercer himself was the foundation's sole donor in 2019 and made a contribution of over $ 2 million. The previous year, the fortune was worth at least $ 24 million.
The curtailment of the general role of the family in donating to such groups suggests that much of Rebekah Mercer's funds will go to Parler, a social media company that claims to accept free expression and attracted a number of leading conservatives Has.
The Wall Street Journal reported that Mercer was the company's primary investor.