A Houston resident, John L. Nau III, is the President and CEO of Silver Eagle Distributors, the largest distributor of Anheuser-Busch products in the United States. In addition to his political interests, Mr. Nau is an avid American history buff and serves as chair of the Texas Historical Commission. Through 95 contributions, Mr. Nau gave a total of $1,259,555.15 in the last political cycle in Texas.
Mr. Nau’s giving encompasses both Republicans and Democrats, with a heavy focus on funding general-purpose political action committees (PACs).
Here’s an overview of John Nau’s giving from the past election cycle:
|John Nau – A Closer Look|
|Total Number of Donations||95|
|Average Donation Amount||$13,258.47|
|Donations to Republicans||$575,508.75|
|Donations to Democrats||$85,500|
|Donations to Texas House Candidates||$134,500|
|Percentage of Donations to Texas House Candidates||10.68%|
|Donations to Texas Senate Candidates||$115,000|
|Percentage of Donations to Texas Senate Candidates||9.13%|
|Donations to Statewide Candidates||$411,508.75|
|Percentage of Donations to Statewide Candidates||32.67%|
|Donations to Advocacy Groups||$533,546.40|
|Percentage of Donations to Advocacy Groups||42.36%|
|Donations Given Inside Home District||$15,000|
|Percentage of Donations Inside Home District||1.19%|
|Donations Given Outside Home District||$1,244,555|
|Percentage of Donations Outside Home District||98.81%|
Key takeaways from Mr. Nau’s giving:
Most interesting donation:
Mr. Nau clearly favors supporting Republicans, as he gave over $575,000 to Republican candidates this cycle. Additionally, his very generous support of groups like the Harris County Republican Party, Republican Party of Texas, and Associated Republicans of Texas Campaign Fund might lead one to believe he was a Republican through and through. What’s interesting though is that he gave more than $85,000 to Democrats as well, including $70,000 to now State Senator Jose Menendez in his high-profile victory over former State Representative Trey Martinez Fischer. Sen. Menendez was seen by many as the business-friendly Democrat, while State Rep. Fischer had made a name for himself as a bomb thrower, often at odds with House leadership. Mr. Nau may have believed State Sen. Melendez was simply the better of two “bad” options, but his support for other Democrats and more moderate Republicans reveals something quite different. Mr. Nau’s vast business enterprise benefits from his having strong relationships with those in power in the Capitol. His support for elected officials more prone to keeping the status quo might prove Mr. Nau is less concerned with party loyalty and ideology and more concerned with what’s “good for business.”
Our A Closer Look series provides a breakdown of a particular donor’s giving habits within Texas politics. We specifically analyze to whom money is given and when, thus providing context so citizens can determine the motivation behind the donor’s giving. Stay tuned for the next installment.