Power Players: Colorado's top political donors, 2007-2012

The 30 largest donors to Colorado politics spent $86 million from 2007 through 2012. This data includes includes donations to state and federal candidates, state issue committees that oppose or support ballot initiatives, federal Super PACS and 527s, which are groups created under IRS laws that act independently of candidates and their campaigns. Also included are federal independent expenditures by Super PACs for or against Colorado candidates.

1 JARED POLIS, Boulder, CO congressman 644 donations: 533 to candidates and 111 to committees
$8,420,886
2 TIM E. GILL, Denver, CO retired software entrepreneur and philanthropist 358 donations: 256 to candidates and 102 to committees
$3,683,894
3 PATRICIA A. STRYKER, Fort Collins, CO philanthropist 266 donations: 196 to candidates and 70 to committees
$3,016,722
4 ED PERLMUTTER, Golden, CO congressman 202 donations: 104 to candidates and 98 to committees
$1,065,772
5 DIANA DEGETTE, Denver, CO congresswoman 152 donations: 71 to candidates and 81 to committees
$967,062
6 PETER LEWIS, Avon Lake, OH insurance executive 5 donations: 0 to candidates and 5 to committees
$875,650
7 JOE COORS, Golden, CO retired CEO and chairman of CoorsTek 94 donations: 70 to candidates and 24 to committees
$789,000
8 MICHAEL BENNET, Denver, CO senator 107 donations: 65 to candidates and 42 to committees
$782,155
9 ROBERT BLAHA, Colorado Springs, CO businessman 13 donations: 9 to candidates and 4 to committees
$753,697
10 BRUCE BERGER, Aspen, CO writer 315 donations: 203 to candidates and 112 to committees
$679,950
11 WILLIAM L. ARMSTRONG III, Greenwood Village, CO businessman 96 donations: 86 to candidates and 10 to committees
$623,455
12 PHILIP F. ANSCHUTZ, Denver, CO entrepreneur, investor 90 donations: 57 to candidates and 33 to committees
$621,050
13 ROBERT KATZ, Boulder, CO businessman 142 donations: 107 to candidates and 35 to committees
$522,680
14 GREGORY MAFFEI, Cherry Hills Village, CO businessman 73 donations: 51 to candidates and 22 to committees
$472,305
15 CHRIS FINDLATER, Miami Beach, FL entrepreneur 54 donations: 28 to candidates and 26 to committees
$471,905
1 NATIONAL EDUCATION ASSOCIATION, Washington, DC labor union 89 donations: 66 to candidates and 23 to committees
$9,816,251
2 UNITED FOOD & COMMERCIAL WORKERS, Washington, DC labor union 162 donations: 120 to candidates and 42 to committees
$8,249,834
3 AMERICAN CROSSROADS, Washington, DC conservative super PAC 34 donations: 34 to candidates and 0 to committees
$6,044,397
4 SEIU, Washington, DC labor union 377 donations: 257 to candidates and 120 to committees
$5,678,591
5 AFSCME, Washington, DC labor union 411 donations: 348 to candidates and 63 to committees
$3,957,978
6 U.S. CHAMBER OF COMMERCE, Washington, DC business organization 11 donations: 11 to candidates and 0 to committees
$3,875,449
7 COLORADO EDUCATION ASSOCIATION, Denver, CO labor union 381 donations: 280 to candidates and 101 to committees
$3,757,605
8 JACOBS ENTERTAINMENT, Golden, CO casinos 26 donations: 9 to candidates and 17 to committees
$3,493,040
9 COLORADANS FOR ECONOMIC GROWTH, Denver, CO defunct issue group 18 donations: 0 to candidates and 18 to committees
$3,406,958
10 FREEDOM'S WATCH, Washington, DC defunct lobbying group 16 donations: 16 to candidates and 0 to committees
$2,808,671
11 COLORADO BUSINESSES FOR SENSIBLE SOLUTIONS, Denver, CO defunct issue group 7 donations: 0 to candidates and 7 to committees
$2,495,500
12 NATIONAL RIFLE ASSOCIATION, Fairfax, VA advocacy organization 171 donations: 165 to candidates and 6 to committees
$2,311,432
13 PLANNED PARENTHOOD, Washington, DC advocacy organization 74 donations: 34 to candidates and 40 to committees
$2,292,405
14 AMERISTAR CASINOS, Las Vegas, NV casinos 29 donations: 0 to candidates and 29 to committees
$2,117,338
15 PATRIOT MAJORITY, Washington, DC super PAC 10 donations: 10 to candidates and 0 to committees
$2,110,000

Source: Contribution data from Center for Responsive Politics, National Institute on Money in State Politics and Colorado Secretary of State

Credits: Colorado’s Top 15 Power Players is a joint project of I-News Network, a nonprofit Colorado investigative news service; the Investigative News Network, a national collaborative of nonprofit news organizations; and the CU News Corps, a class aimed at teaching University of Colorado Journalism & Mass Communication students deep reporting skills while providing content to Colorado news outlets. Interactive by Michael Corey, Coulter Jones and Chase Davis of California Watch and the Center for Investigative Reporting.