Whenever there is late campaign-money intrigue to be had, it seems that U-T publisher and mega-millionaire real estate developer Douglas Manchester and his young Russian second wife Geniya will show up for the party.
Such is the case with an obscure political fundraising committee called the Victory Congressional Fund out of Athens, Georgia.
Set up on August 15 of this year, according to an August 28 filing with the Federal Election Commission, the committee is registered as a so-called joint fundraising committee for San Diego GOP congressional candidate Carl DeMaio, Colorado Republican congressman Mike Coffman, and former House GOP member Robert Dold of Illinois, seeking to reclaim the seat he lost to Democrat Brad Schneider two years ago.
Major cash quietly solicited from a variety of well-heeled donors has been given by the committee to the trio in the waning weeks of the campaign. On October 30, records show, DeMaio's effort received $14,139.62 from the fund.
Two weeks before that, on October 15, Manchester and his wife kicked in a total of $7800. So far, according to OpenSecrets.org, DeMaio has received a total of $72,738 from the committee.
The publisher, a longtime DeMaio friend and political backer, has also given a total of $82,600 to the San Diego Republican Party so far this year, and previously gave DeMaio's congressional campaign $5200 in June of last year.
The Manchesters aren't the only famous locals to come up with money for the Georgia-based Victory committee. Douglas Deason — son of Texas billionaire Darwin Deason — and wife Holly came up with $5200 on September 17 and the same again on October 3.
The senior Deason, who gave the fund $5200 on September 25, put together plans for a lavish beachside mansion on La Jolla's Spindrift Drive with the help of lobbyist Matt Peterson.
El Indio taco-shop mogul Ralph Pesqueira gave $2500; diet queen Jenny Craig contributed $5000 on August 22.
Colorado billionaire Philip F. Anschutz came up with $2600 on October 14, the filings show. Anschutz Entertainment Group, also known as AEG, is trying to build a football stadium in Los Angeles that could become the new home of the Chargers.
His onetime rival in the race to build an L.A.-area stadium — City of Industry developer Edward P. Roski Jr., CEO of Majestic Realty — gave $1000 to DeMaio's Democratic rival, House freshman Scott Peters, on November 1.
Other late givers to the Peters campaign included political consultant Vincent Hall, the former chief of staff to fallen Democratic mayor Bob Filner, with $1000 on November 1; and wealthy tech maven Theodore Roth, with $1600 on October 31.