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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Paul Allen backed initiatives and candidates

Just as he was a driving force in the tech world, health care research and Northwest sports, Paul Allen was an important player in Washington – and eventually national – politics.

This year, Allen contributed $1.4 million to the initiative committee seeking restrictions on semi-automatic rifle sales and safe storage of firearms in homes. His initial contribution of $1 million was the first money the Safe Schools Safe Communities reported receiving after registering with the Public Disclosure Commission.

In 2015 he gave more than $2.2 million in cash and in-kind contributions to Initiative 1401, which instituted state criminal charges for anyone trafficking in threatened animal species products. It was about two-thirds of the total raised by the Save Animals Facing Extinction campaign committee.

His company, Vulcan Inc., backed this year’s initiative for new rules on deadly force by police officers and opposed Seattle’s jobs tax. It also supported past state initiatives ranging from charter schools and same-sex marriage.

His personal contributions to federal candidates were bipartisan, Federal Elections Commission records show. He backed both Democrats and Republicans in the Washington congressional delegation, contributing $2,000 to Republican Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers for her current campaign and $3,500 for her 2016 campaign.

He backed Hillary Clinton for president in 2008, and again in 2016 when he gave more than $29,000 to campaigns supporting her. But that same year he also contributed to Republican John McCain’s Senate campaign and this year has given $33,900 to the National Republican Campaign Committee which works to elect GOP candidates to the House.

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