Gingrich Billionaire Pal's Plan B: Romney

Sheldon Adelson's focus on beating Obama, whoever wins nomination
By Mark Russell,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 5, 2012 8:35 AM CST
Las Vegas Sands Chairman and CEO Sheldon Adelson and his wife Miriam Ochsorn arrive for Sands China's annual general meeting in Hong Kong Tuesday, June 7, 2011.   (AP Photo/Vincent Yu)
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(Newser) – Billionaire Sheldon Adelson has kept Newt Gingrich's presidential campaign afloat, giving $10 million to a pro-Gingrich super PAC, but the former speaker of the House shouldn't get too comfortable—Adelson says he will give even more generously to Mitt Romney, should Romney win the Republican nomination, reports the New York Times. Apparently Adelson's main motivations are supporting Israel and defeating President Obama, issues that he considers more important than his personal loyalty to Gingrich.

While Romney wasn't bothered by Adelson's first $5 million donation, the second $5 million and ensuing negative ads apparently got under his skin, causing Romney to court the prickly billionaire. Adelson is also concerned that no other big-money donors have joined him in supporting Gingrich, as well as by the growing sense of inevitability of a Romney win. "[A]ny time that Newt decides to get out of the race, he would devote his energy and money to the overriding issue, which is beating Barack Obama," says an Adelson friend and Romney fundraiser. Gingrich says that's not happening anytime soon. (Read more Mitt Romney stories.)

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