Billionaire Asness Responds to Trump’s Threats and Stands Up for Haley

The billionaire on Wall Street Clifford Asness defended his efforts to raise money for Republican Nikki Haley after her opponent, Donald Trump, threatened to ban all of her backers from the “MAGA camp.”

“I felt like I had completed my task when I made an early and substantial contribution to Nikki. However, I might have to contribute more going forward if my prior contributions aren’t enough to get me “barred” from his RINO (yes, they are just Republicans in name only) cult, Asness wrote in a post on X Friday.

Chief investment officer of AQR Capital Management Asness is one of the prominent contributors co-hosting a fundraiser for Haley on January 30 in New York. In addition to Stanley Druckenmiller, Ken Langone, and Henry Kravis, other Wall Street billionaires, the event is meant to support Haley’s long-shot campaign in the lead-up to next month’s primary in her home state of South Carolina, where Trump is currently leading in the polls.

Even though Haley and Trump are the only two prominent candidates remaining in the Republican contest, the former president continues to be favored in national surveys following his victories in the Iowa caucus and the New Hampshire primary. But that hasn’t stopped Haley’s supporters from giving generously. Haley’s supporter, Stand for America Fund Inc., raised $50.1 million in the final six months of 2023, nearly $5 million more than the super political action committee of the Trump campaign.

In recent weeks, the two rivals have intensified their attacks on one another. “Anybody that makes a ‘Contribution’ to Birdbrain, from this moment forth, will be permanently barred from the MAGA camp,” was the derogatory moniker Trump used for Haley in his initial Truth Social post this week.

In a jab at Trump’s growing legal problems, Asness asked in his post if he would “bow out” for $83.3 million, the sum a New York jury determined on Friday the former president must pay to former Elle columnist E. Jean Carroll for defaming her.

Requests for comment from AQR Capital Management and the Trump campaign were not immediately answered.

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