WASHINGTON—For every Department of Defense (DOD) employee who gave to President Donald Trump’s 2016 campaign, five colleagues backed his opponent, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, according to an Epoch Times analysis of Federal Election Commission (FEC) data.
A similar pattern was found among employees who identified the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) as their employer in contributions disclosed by the FEC from 2015 to 2019.
The bias in favor of Clinton is notable because Defense and Homeland Security workers were thought to be likely to support Trump as a result of his campaign promises to strengthen and update those departments.
But within the DOD, 854 employees made more than 3,100 individual contributions to Clinton for a total of nearly $368,000. By contrast, only 116 DOD employees sent checks to Trump, with 590 individual contributions worth a total of $202,067. However, the average DOD employee contribution to Trump was much higher than the Clinton average: $342 versus $117.
For Democratic Party committees, including those at the state and county levels, only five DOD employees made contributions; the donations averaged more than $188 each, for a total of $29,607.
By contrast, Republican Party committees were supported by 23 DOD workers, who gave on average $81 each for a total of $28,451, making the organizing panels the only contribution category in which the two major parties were closely matched within the DOD.
Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) isn’t without support within the DOD, as between his 2016 and 2020 presidential campaigns, 120 defense workers contributed more than $35,000, at an average of $50 each from 697 individual donations.
A total of 457 of the Sanders checks were written for his campaign against Clinton, with the remaining 240 steered to his current presidential effort.
Former Rep. Beto O’Rourke (D-Texas) was the recipient of $18,750 in donations from 57 DOD workers, an average of $63 from 298 individual contributions.
The majority of O’Rourke’s contributions were made for his losing 2018 challenge against Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), with the remainder going to his 2020 presidential campaign. O’Rourke ended the latter effort in November 2019.
Former Vice President Joe Biden’s 2020 presidential campaign was the recipient of contributions averaging $160 each from 24 DOD employees, for a total of $3,845.
Act Blue, a liberal group that channels contributions to Democratic candidates and causes, also received more money from DOD employees than Trump, with 1,124 donors giving more than $206,000. The average Act Blue donation, however, was much smaller at $17.67.
Another liberal campaign group, Emily’s List, received contributions from four DOD workers, averaging $46 and totaling more than $2,100.
And Moveon.org, the liberal campaign group founded in 1998 to oppose the impeachment of President Bill Clinton, was supported by 27 DOD employees, who gave an average of $14 each for a total of $800.
More than 718,000 federal civil servants work at the DOD, along with 1.4 million uniformed employees of the U.S. military.
At the DHS, Clinton was favored by 140 employees, with contributions averaging $72 and totaling more than $214,000. Thirty-five DHS workers supported Trump, giving an average of $62 for a total of slightly more than $4,200.
Republican Party committees received a total of $7,697 from 15 DHS employees, at an average of $137 each. Democratic Party committees did significantly better, getting $51,575 from 22 DHS employees, for an average of $316 each.
Act Blue was supported by 218 DHS employees who gave on average $22 each, for a total of nearly $37,000.
Sanders, Clinton’s main 2016 Democratic presidential primary opponent, was supported by 11 DHS workers, who gave an average of $42 each for a total of $2,241.
Similarly, O’Rourke received 43 contributions averaging $57 each, for a total of $2,449.
No DHS employees gave money during the five-year period to former Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.), or any other Democratic presidential campaign.
The DHS employs more than 240,000 workers, including those at U.S. Customs and Border Protection who deal with immigration abuses.
An Oct. 26, 2016, analysis by The Hill of FEC data for donations of $200 or more by federal workers at DOD showed Clinton getting 84 percent of the $269,135 total of contributions, compared to 16 percent for Trump.
Contact Mark Tapscott at Mark.Tapscott@epochtimes.nyc.