Published On: Tue, Sep 9th, 2014

Bill Ackman and Sheldon Adelson: Sugar Daddies of K Street

Bill Ackman and Sheldon Adelson

K Street is asking for help and it knows who to call: Las Vegas Sands CEO Sheldon Adelson and activist investor Bill Ackman. K Street is a GOP lobbying group which is battling well-heeled former Obama aides and left-leaning generous capitalists. Sheldon Adelson has been open fisted in his donations to Republican causes, particularly one dear to his heart; the ban on online gambling. While this sounds like it might smack of government regulation, and would sound more like a left-wing issue, for some inexplicable reason, the casino owner has poured a tremendous amount of funding into this particular fight. Perhaps an online gambling ban is actually a right-wing, rather than a left-wing issue, in that it would promote family values? Don’t bring gambling into the house online–keep it in the casino where it belongs (kids, do you know where your father is? Atlantic City? Vegas?)

Bill Ackman is not the typical GOP donor, because there is an aspect of government regulation he would like, namely, the possible shutting down of Herbalife, which he calls a fraudulent and illegal scheme. It has a similar business model to Tupperware? Well, Tupperware is different. Its products are useful, even beyond the grave, since they last for eternity. And it is less of a pressing moral issue to Ackman because he doesn’t happen to have a huge short position in Tupperware.

Ackman and Adelson make a rare GOP point: sometimes regulation can actually be good for business. But usually if you own it, or a part of it.

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