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L.A. Billionaires Still Throw Millions at Bill Clinton

Former president Bill Clinton hasn't lost the golden touch when it comes to raising big money in Los Angeles.

Former U.S. President Bill Clinton

Former U.S. President Bill Clinton


In 2009, The William J. Clinton Foundation, the former president's non-profit group that fights everything from global climate change to HIV/AIDS, raked in millions of dollars from Los Angeles billionaires Eli Broad and Haim Saban, not-quite-billionaire Steve Bing and super rich Casey Wasserman, among others.

As president, Clinton always had strong, fund raising connections in this town, and it appears those ties are still firmly in place.

According to the Clinton Foundation's Web site, Hollywood producer Steve Bing, who loaned Clinton his private jet when the former president flew to North Korea to rescue two journalists last year, gave a huge donation to the non-profit: somewhere between $10 million and $25 million.

Billionaire Haim Saban and entertainment executive Casey Wasserman, who's the grandson of legendary Hollywood studio titan Lew Wasserman, gave between $5 million and $10 million through their respective foundations.

Billionaire Eli Broad donated between $1 million and $5 million.

The list also includes slightly smaller contributions from movie director Steven Spielberg and billionaire entertainment mogul David Geffen.

Interestingly, we didn't see a Bing-like gift from L.A. supermarket magnate Ron Burkle, who for years considered Clinton to be one of his best friends. The two men, though, may not be so chummy these days.

In March, 2009, the Wall Street Journal reported that Clinton completely severed his business ties with Burkle and walked away from a $20-million payment for services rendered.

Clinton, though, still has plenty of mega-rich friends in L.A.

Contact Patrick Range McDonald at pmcdonald@laweekly.com.