The reclusive, super-wealthy Republican donor Harold Simmons sat down for an interview with the Wall Street Journal in which he explained why he decided to donate $18 million to conservative super PACs. To put it bluntly: he despises and fears President Barack Obama.
"Any of these Republicans would make a better president than that socialist, Obama," Simmons told the Journal (subscription required), in what is the piece's most provocative quote. "Obama is the most dangerous American alive … because he would eliminate free enterprise in this country."
An industrialist who heads Contran Corp., Simmons is not as well known as his fellow deep-pocketed, super PAC-backing brethren, Sheldon Adelson and Foster Friess. But the total number of dollars he's given makes him the biggest giver so far this election cycle. His sit-down with the Journal provided one of the first actual windows into what animates his politics.
The 80-year-old Texan takes his political advice from Karl Rove. And at another point in the interview, he insisted that if more campaign commercials had been run tying then-Sen. Obama to Bill Ayers, "we" -- as in conservatives -- "could have killed Obama." By this, he is speaking metaphorically, though the impression is left that those very ads will be featured more prominently in 2012.
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