Bill Maher’s Million: Comedian Cuts Big Check to Pro-Obama Super PAC

Feb 24, 2012 9:54am

gty bill maher thg 120224 wblog Bill Mahers Million: Comedian Cuts Big Check to Pro Obama Super PAC

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Bill Maher has become one of the biggest backers of pro-Obama super PAC Priorities USA Action.

The liberal comedian and talk show host on Thursday night presented a $1 million personal check written to Priorities during his comedy special “CrazyStupidPolitics: Live from Silicon Valley” which streamed on Yahoo.com.

“It’s a completely different world we’re in now than the last election, when $2300 was the maximum donation, and now [Newt Gingrich backer] Sheldon [Adelson] talks about giving 100 million! That’s a pretty big jump, thanks to the Supreme Court,” Maher told ABC News in an email.

“And that for me: this hurts! And I hope the many many more wealthy liberals look at this and say, if he can do it, we can,” he said.

Maher’s $1 million contribution comes as Priorities struggles to raise funds to compete with its pro-Republican counterparts.

Priorities USA Action raised just $4.1 million in all of 2011, relying largely on benefactors like Dreamworks CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg who gave $2 million and director Steven Spielberg  who chipped in $100,000.

The group reported a relatively meager $59,000 in donations in January.

“With the hundreds of millions of dollars Karl Rove and billionaire oil executives like the Koch brothers have pledged this election, we appreciate that Mr. Maher and others have so generously stepped up to the plate to fight back,” senior strategist for Priorities USA Action Bill Burton said in an email.

Last month President Obama moved to encourage his supporters to support Priorities, reversing an earlier decision to maintain distance from the group.

This post has been updated from an earlier version.  ABC News’ Jake Tapper contributed to this report.

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