Person

Jonathan Soros

Nationality:

American

Born:

September 10, 1970 in New York, NY

Parents:

George Soros

Annaliese Witschak

Jonathan Soros is a prominent liberal donor. The son of liberal finance billionaire and political donor George Soros, Jonathan spent many years managing his father’s varied financial interests,[1] and in recent years, has taken a prominent role in his father’s left-of-center political endeavors hoping to parlay his financial prominence into “a deeper role in the future of Democratic politics.”[2]

He has served on the board of a number of left-leaning think tanks and issues organizations such as the NAACP Legal Defense and Education Fund, New America, and the Roosevelt Institute. [3] Meanwhile, Soros and his personal foundation have given millions of dollars to left-leaning issue organizations including Planned Parenthood Votes, the Tides Foundation, Center for Reproductive Rights, Brennan Center For Justice, and Public Campaign. [4] He has also given millions of dollars to the Democratic Party, and hundreds of Democratic political candidates. [5]

In his support of left-leaning political causes, Jonathan Soros plays a significant role in the Democracy Alliance, a secretive Democratic mega-donor apparatus.[6] In 2004, Soros worked alongside his father with two 527 organizations, Americans Coming Together and Moveon.org, in support of Democratic presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry (D-Massachusetts). [7] He also has served as a leader in his father’s philanthropy, the Open Society Foundations, [8] which has delivered tens of millions of dollars to liberal political causes annually. [9]

Despite his substantial political and policy expenditures, Soros has bemoaned the rise of unlimited anonymous political contributions as “indefensible,” [10] and has given millions of dollars to a super PAC which claims an emphasis on removing money from politics.[11]

Organizational Overview

Jonathan Tivadar Soros is the son of liberal billionaire George Soros.[12] JS obtained a bachelor’s degree from Wesleyan University in 1992 and then a law degree and a master’s in public policy from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. [13] [14]

In 1997, Soros married Jennifer Ann Allan,[15] a social worker whom he met while they were both working for President Bill Clinton’s 1992 Presidential campaign.[16]

Business Career

After law school, Soros served as a law clerk to Judge Stephen F. Williams of the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.[17]

In 2002 Soros began working for his father’s private equity group, a section of Soros Fund Management. In 2004, Jonathan and his oldest brother Robert Soros were named co-deputy chairmen of the company, which at the time controlled the majority of the Soros family’s fortune.[18] He served as the Fund’s president and deputy chairman from 2005 to 2011.[19] In this role, Jonathan served as the fund’s chief investment officer and oversaw the fund’s transition from a hedge fund to a family office focused on managing money for the Soros family and foundation.[20] According to the Washington Post, the Soros family closed their hedge fund to outside investors in order to escape newly enacted federal regulations, a move that “raised eyebrows” due to the fact that the George Soros had previously championed those same regulations.[21]

In 2011, Soros Fund Management declined by about 15%, while according to Reuters the average hedge fund that same year lost only 5%.[22]In April 2012, Jonathan founded the private investment firm JS Capital Management, LLC[23] to manage his own money.[24] He currently serves as chief executive officer at the firm. [25] In 2015, JS Capital Management was worth over $500 million.[26]

Political Activism

Democracy Alliance

Also see Democracy Alliance (Other Group)

In 2004, Jonathan Soros was an early supporter of the liberal Democracy Alliance.[27] He attended the organization’s initial fundraising presentation alongside his father, and he subsequently headlined other early organizing meetings for the Democracy Alliance.[28] As of 2014, he was a prominent member of the Democracy Alliance and attended the spring investment conference alongside other prominent liberals such as billionaire environmentalist Tom Steyer, Mayor Bill de Blasio (D-New York City), and former Democratic National Committee chair Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-Florida).[29]

Open Society Foundations

Also see Open Society Foundations (Nonprofit)

Jonathan Soros has held “several board positions affiliated with the Open Society Foundations (formerly the Open Society Institute).”[30] From 2009 through at least 2015, Jonathan served as a vice chair and director at his father’s Foundation to Promote Open Society.[31] From 2006 to 2016 he served on the Open Society Foundations Board of Trustees[32] and its U.S. Programs Board.[33][34]

In 2016, Soros was charged with steering the Open Society Institute’s U.S. Programs’ 2017-2020 strategy development process.[35] At a meeting, Soros discussed how OSF could promote liberal values in the presidential election “as a complement to the more hard-nosed partisan tactics.”[36]

According to a conservative news source, in 2011 alone the Open Society Foundation gave more than $58 million to left-leaning grantees.[37]

Organization Associations

Numerous news articles have noted that Jonathan Soros is like his father in that he has supported or helped to run a number of left-leaning political organizations. In 2004, the New York Times Magazine noted that Soros was “deeply involved” in monitoring his fathers’ “political investments day to day.”[38] According to the article, Jonathan was “looking to play a deeper role in the future of Democratic politics” and had traveled “extensively throughout the country” asking his business contacts “for million-dollar checks.” [39]

In the lead up to the 2004 presidential election, Jonathan Soros was associated with left-wing 527 organizing groups[40] Moveon.org and America Coming Together, “two groups campaigning for a John Kerry victory.”[41] Notably, Jonathan was in charge of a controversial advertising contest for Moveon.org that resulted in the republication of advertisements comparing President George W. Bush to Adolf Hitler. These advertisements were later removed from the website and Moveon.org apologized for republishing them.[42]

Soros has served on the boards of directors of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People’s (NAACP) Legal Defense and Educational Fund. He also served as a board member at the liberal think tank New America and as a senior fellow at the left-wing think tank Roosevelt Institute.[43]

Political Contributions

However, Soros has personally given hundreds of donations worth over $3.5 million to various left-wing political candidates and causes over the years.[44] Soros gave over $2 million to the Friends of Democracy Super PAC, hundreds of thousands of dollars to the political action committee arm of Planned Parenthood (Planned Parenthood Votes), $100,000 to Moveon.org Voter Fund, and $20,000 to the Progressive Change Campaign Committee. Additionally he gave over $100,000 respectively to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, over $80,000 to the Democratic National Committee, and over $20,000 to President Barack Obama. Soros has also contributed thousands of dollars to the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, the League of Conservation Voters, Hillary Clinton for President, Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), and Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Massachusetts). [45]

Jennifer and Jonathan Allan Soros Foundation

Also see Jennifer and Jonathan Allan Soros Foundation (Nonprofit)

Jonathan Soros and his wife, Jennifer, created the Jennifer and Jonathan Allan Soros Foundation in 2009. As of 2016, the foundation had $150 million in assets. Since 2011, the foundation has spent approximately $20 million.[46]

Since 2010, the Jennifer and Jonathan Allen Soros Foundation has given millions of dollars in grants to left-leaning organizations including nearly $1,000,000 to the Tides Foundation, $1.2 million to various Planned Parenthood entities, over $400,000 to Center For Reproductive Rights, $600,000 to NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc., $400,000 to Demos, $200,000 to the Brennan Center For Justice, $1.7 million to Public Campaign, and nearly $1.8 million to New America.[47]

The foundation has also given thousands of dollars to the Educational Fund To Stop Gun Violence, the National Audubon Society, Death Penalty Focus, Common Cause Education Fund, and the Progressive America Fund. [48]

Campaign Finance

Jonathan Soros has championed campaign-finance regulations.   In 2012 Soros founded the Friends Of Democracy PAC (FODPAC), which later merged into the liberal advocacy group Every Voice, to promote campaign-finance reform. Politico said that FODPAC aimed to “get money out of politics,” and labeled it the “PAC to End All PACs.”[49] Similarly, the Washington Post called it an “anti-superpac super pac.”[50]

In 2015, Soros, who has given millions to support left-wing public policy groups and Democratic political candidates and committees, bemoaned the “dramatic rise of ‘dark money’ since Citizens United” and said that unlimited anonymous political contributions was “indefensible.”[51]

References

  1. “New America: Our People: Jonathan Soros.” NewAmerica.org. Undated. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.newamerica.org/our-people/jonathan-soros/
  2. Bai, Matt. “Wiring the Vast Left-Wing Conspiracy.” N.Y. Times. July 25, 2004. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/25/magazine/wiring-the-vast-left-wing-conspiracy.html
  3. “New America: Our People: Jonathan Soros.” NewAmerica.org. Undated. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.newamerica.org/our-people/jonathan-soros/
  4. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax. Jennifer and Jonathan Allen Soros Foundation. 2010-2016. Schedule VIII. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/800464952
  5. Center For Responsive Politics. “Donor Lookup: Jonathan Soros.” OpenSecrets.org. Updated March 29, 2018. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.opensecrets.org/donor-lookup/results?name=Jonathan+Soros
  6. Vogel, Kenneth. “The left’s secret club.” Politico. April 4, 2014. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.politico.com/story/2014/04/democrats-democracy-alliance-liberal-donors-105972
  7. Griffiths, Katherine. “Soros promotes sons as succession plans take shape.” The UK Independent. October 5, 2004. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/soros-promotes-sons-as-succession-plans-take-shape-542802.html
  8. “New America: Our People: Jonathan Soros.” NewAmerica.org. Undated. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.newamerica.org/our-people/jonathan-soros/
  9. Ciandella, Mike. “Soros Son Says, ‘Get Money Out of Politics’ – But, Helped Give $58M to Lefty Causes in 2011.” CNS News. March 28, 2014. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.cnsnews.com/mrctv-blog/mike-ciandella/soros-son-says-get-money-out-politics-helped-give-58m-lefty-causes-2011
  10. Soros, Jonathan. “Soros: Big money can’t buy elections – influence is something else.” Reuters. February 10, 2015. Accessed April 10, 2018. http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2015/02/09/soros-there-is-no-idyllic-pre-citizens-united-era-to-return-to/
  11. Freedlander, David. “The PAC to End All PACs.” Politico. March 27, 2014. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2014/03/jonathan-soros-the-pac-to-end-all-pacs-105123
  12. “Jonathan Soros and Jennifer Allan.” N.Y. Times. August 17, 1997. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.nytimes.com/1997/08/17/style/jonathan-soros-and-jennifer-allan.html
  13. Atlas, Riva. “2 Soros Sons Get More Control of the Business.” N.Y. Times. October 6, 2004. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.nytimes.com/1997/08/17/style/jonathan-soros-and-jennifer-allan.html
  14. “New America: Our People: Jonathan Soros.” NewAmerica.org. Undated. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.newamerica.org/our-people/jonathan-soros/
  15. “Jonathan Soros and Jennifer Allan.” N.Y. Times. August 17, 1997. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.nytimes.com/1997/08/17/style/jonathan-soros-and-jennifer-allan.html
  16. Tharp, Paul. “Soros Passing Torch To 2 Sons.” N.Y. Post. October 6, 2004. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://nypost.com/2004/10/06/soros-passing-torch-to-2-sons/
  17. “New America: Our People: Jonathan Soros.” NewAmerica.org. Undated. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.newamerica.org/our-people/jonathan-soros/
  18. Tharp, Paul. “Soros Passing Torch To 2 Sons.” N.Y. Post. October 6, 2004. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://nypost.com/2004/10/06/soros-passing-torch-to-2-sons/
  19. “New America: Our People: Jonathan Soros.” NewAmerica.org. Undated. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.newamerica.org/our-people/jonathan-soros/
  20. Ablan, Jennifer and Goldstein, Matthew. “Exclusive: Soros’ son strikes out on his own.” Reuters. April 1, 2012. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-sorosfamily-hedge/exclusive-soros-son-strikes-out-on-his-own-idUSBRE82T19C20120401
  21. Cezary, Podkul. “Hero to liberals, Soros ends hedge fund career to escape regulations.” Washington Post. July 26, 2011. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/hero-to-liberals-soros-ends-hedge-fund-career-to-escape-regulations/2011/07/26/gIQApZ0hbI_story.html
  22. Ablan, Jennifer and Goldstein, Matthew. “Exclusive: Soros’ son strikes out on his own.” Reuters. April 1, 2012. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-sorosfamily-hedge/exclusive-soros-son-strikes-out-on-his-own-idUSBRE82T19C20120401
  23. “New America: Our People: Jonathan Soros.” NewAmerica.org. Undated. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.newamerica.org/our-people/jonathan-soros/
  24. Ablan, Jennifer and Goldstein, Matthew. “Exclusive: Soros’ son strikes out on his own.” Reuters. April 1, 2012. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-sorosfamily-hedge/exclusive-soros-son-strikes-out-on-his-own-idUSBRE82T19C20120401
  25. “New America: Our People: Jonathan Soros.” NewAmerica.org. Undated. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.newamerica.org/our-people/jonathan-soros/
  26. “Analyzing Jonathan Soros’s JS CAPITAL MANAGEMENT Equity Holdings In Q2 2015.” Jewish Business News. August 21, 2015. Accessed April 10, 2018. http://jewishbusinessnews.com/2015/08/21/analyzing-jonathan-soross-js-capital-management-equity-holdings-in-q2-2015/
  27. Vogel, Kenneth. “The left’s secret club.” Politico. April 4, 2014. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.politico.com/story/2014/04/democrats-democracy-alliance-liberal-donors-105972
  28. Bai, Matt. “Wiring the Vast Left-Wing Conspiracy.” N.Y. Times. July 25, 2004. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/25/magazine/wiring-the-vast-left-wing-conspiracy.html
  29. Vogel, Kenneth. “The left’s secret club.” Politico. April 4, 2014. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.politico.com/story/2014/04/democrats-democracy-alliance-liberal-donors-105972
  30. “New America: Our People: Jonathan Soros.” NewAmerica.org. Undated. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.newamerica.org/our-people/jonathan-soros/
  31. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax. Foundation to Promote Open Society Institute. 2009-2015. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/263753801
  32. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax. Open Society Institute. 2006-2015. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/137029285
  33. “Soros Foundation s Network Report 2008.” Open Society Institute. 2009. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.opensocietyfoundations.org/sites/default/files/ar08_20090911_0.pdf
  34. “Open Society U.S. Programs Board Meeting.” Open Society Foundations. September 3-4, 2013. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://fdik.org/soros.dcleaks.com/download/index.html%3Ff=%252Ffinal%2520book.pdf&t=us
  35. “Open Society U.S. Programs Board Meeting.” Open Society Foundations. May 4-6, 2016. Accessed April 10, 2018. http://freebeacon.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/soros-board-book-2016.pdf
  36. “Open Society U.S. Programs Board Meeting.” Open Society Foundations. May 4-6, 2016. Accessed April 10, 2018. http://freebeacon.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/soros-board-book-2016.pdf
  37. Ciandella, Mike. “Soros Son Says, ‘Get Money Out of Politics’ – But, Helped Give $58M to Lefty Causes in 2011.” CNS News. March 28, 2014. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.cnsnews.com/mrctv-blog/mike-ciandella/soros-son-says-get-money-out-politics-helped-give-58m-lefty-causes-2011
  38. Bai, Matt. “Wiring the Vast Left-Wing Conspiracy.” N.Y. Times. July 25, 2004. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/25/magazine/wiring-the-vast-left-wing-conspiracy.html
  39. Bai, Matt. “Wiring the Vast Left-Wing Conspiracy.” N.Y. Times. July 25, 2004. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.nytimes.com/2004/07/25/magazine/wiring-the-vast-left-wing-conspiracy.html
  40. Johnson, Sasha. “MoveOn.org is getting out of the 527 business.” CNN. June 20, 2008. Accessed April 10, 2018. http://politicalticker.blogs.cnn.com/2008/06/20/moveonorg-shutters-its-527/
  41. Griffiths, Katherine. “Soros promotes sons as succession plans take shape.” The UK Independent. October 5, 2004. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/soros-promotes-sons-as-succession-plans-take-shape-542802.html
  42. Horowitz, David and Poe, Richard. “The Shadow Party: Part II.” Front Pge Magazine. October 7, 2004. Accessed April 10, 2018. http://archive.frontpagemag.com/readArticle.aspx?ARTID=11084
  43. “New America: Our People: Jonathan Soros.” NewAmerica.org. Undated. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.newamerica.org/our-people/jonathan-soros/
  44. Center For Responsive Politics. “Donor Lookup: Jonathan Soros.” OpenSecrets.org. Updated March 29, 2018. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.opensecrets.org/donor-lookup/results?name=Jonathan+Soros
  45. Center For Responsive Politics. “Donor Lookup: Jonathan Soros.” OpenSecrets.org. Updated March 29, 2018. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.opensecrets.org/donor-lookup/results?name=Jonathan+Soros
  46. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax. Jennifer and Jonathan Allen Soros Foundation. 2010-2016. Part XV. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/800464952
  47. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax. Jennifer and Jonathan Allen Soros Foundation. 2010-2016. Part XV. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/800464952
  48. Return of Organization Exempt from Income Tax. Jennifer and Jonathan Allen Soros Foundation. 2010-2016. Part XV. https://projects.propublica.org/nonprofits/organizations/800464952
  49. Freedlander, David. “The PAC to End All PACs.” Politico. March 27, 2014. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2014/03/jonathan-soros-the-pac-to-end-all-pacs-105123
  50. Eggen, Dan. “Son of liberal financier George Soros launches anti-super PAC super PAC.” Washington Post. July 12, 2012. Accessed April 10, 2018. https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/son-of-liberal-financier-george-soros-launches-anti-super-pac-super-pac/2012/07/12/gJQABQlufW_story.html
  51. Soros, Jonathan. “Soros: Big money can’t buy elections – influence is something else.” Reuters. February 10, 2015. Accessed April 10, 2018. http://blogs.reuters.com/great-debate/2015/02/09/soros-there-is-no-idyllic-pre-citizens-united-era-to-return-to/
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