New GM CEO is Big Donor to Republicans

Incoming General Motors CEO Daniel Akerson’s first meeting at the Obama White House should be interesting.

Daniel Akerson, Managing Director of The Carlyle Group
Daniel Akerson, Managing Director of The Carlyle Group

Akerson is a generous donor to Republican political campaigns who has contributed at least $47,700 to GOP causes in the past two election cycles, according to data available at

In the last presidential election, Akerson lavished money on President Obama’s GOP rival, John McCain, donating $2,300 to the Arizona senator in 2007 and again in 2008.

Akerson, who is a managing director at the politically savvy Washington-based private equity firm The Carlyle Group, wrote a hefty $28,500 check to the Republican National Committee in 2008, the records show, after kicking in $5,000 to the National Republican Congressional Committee a year earlier.

He’s also supported key GOP lawmakers, including sending $5,000 to the leadership political action committee of John Boehner, the Ohio Republican who is vying to succeed Nancy Pelosi as Speaker if the Republicans win control of the House of Representatives this fall.

And the new GM CEO gave $2,300 to Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell in 2008 as well as $2,300 to Alabama Republican Sen. Richard Shelby the same year.

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A search of the database did not turn up any contributions from Akerson to Democrats.

The White House has said that it is taking a hands-off approach to managing General Motors, even though the Treasury controls more than 60 percent of GM’s common stock.

And when it comes to the timing of a GM IPO filing, which could come as early as Friday, a White House official told CNBC Thursday, “This is a decision made by GM and the White House has no role.”