CHICAGO — Real estate billionaire Donald Trump gave Chicago mayoral candidate Rahm Emanuel $50,000 in December 2010, just months before hinting to the media he is seriously contemplating a bid to be the Republican Party’s 2012 presidential nominee.
Illinois State Board of Elections records show Trump’s contribution to Emanuel, Barack Obama’s former chief of staff, was not the first time Trump has donated to Illinois candidates. ISBE records show the New York native also gave $5000 to a Republican gubernatorial candidate George Ryan in 1998. After Ryan was elected, Trump followed up with another $5000 three years later, weeks before Ryan announced he was not seeking re-election.
Sixteen months later, Trump then donated $5000 to Democratic gubernatorial candidate Rod Blagojevich and gave another $2000 in 2002, during Blagojevich’s his successful re-election bid.