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It’s all about the money in the race for 2016.

Super PACs — outside groups that can raise unlimited money to spend for presidential candidates — need to release their donors and total money by Friday night at midnight. Not all the reports are in, but we are already starting to learn which mega-donors are forking over big bucks, and how candidates are spending the money.

But there’s a catch: unlike the campaigns themselves, Super PACs can raise unlimited dollars, but they aren’t allowed to “officially” coordinate their strategies with the campaigns. Still, these dollars will undoubtedly benefit the candidates during the elections, particularly in terms of how many ads they can afford or how outside staff they can support.

We went digging into the details:

1. An Historic Haul

The dollars are flowing in for Jeb Bush.

The former Florida governor raked in an unprecedented $103 million through his Super PAC, called Right to Rise. This amount surpasses his competitors by far; Hillary Clinton’s Super PAC “Priorities USA Action,” raised approximately $15.6 million.

Bush also has two dozen donors who have given at least $1 million through the first half of 2015. Clinton had 7 donors who gave that amount to “Priorities USA Action.”

And how much has the group spent? Less than 1 percent, which means they have the largest stockpile in the field heading into the crowded GOP primary.

2. Big Donors, Big Dollars

It may just take one big donor for some candidates — like Texas Sen. Ted Cruz. One of Cruz’s major Super PACs called Keep the Promise II has only one donor: Toby Neugebauer, a private equity firm leader, gave a whopping $10 million to the organization. It’s the largest single donation of the 2016 cycle so far.

But Cruz isn’t alone. More than 80 percent of Mike Huckabee’s $3.6 million haul came from Arkansas poultry company owner Ronald Cameron. And Wisconsin businesswoman Diane Hendricks gave $5 million to her governor, Scott Walker.

And a combined $10 million went to Rick Perry’s Super PAC from Texas businessman Kelcy Warren and Arkansas businessman Darwin Deason.

3. Going For The Gold

Some sports owners aren’t leaving it all out on the field. Instead, they’re choosing to play in the political arena.

Scott Walker’s Super PAC “Unintimidated” raked in the biggest donation from a sports-associated contributor. The Ricketts family — the owners of the Chicago Cubs baseball team — tossed $5 million dollars to the Super PAC backing the Wisconsin governor. Joe gave $100,000, his wife Marlene gave $4.9 million in contributions and their son Todd gave almost $2,500. According to Forbes, the family is worth nearly $4.5 billion.

Washington Redskins owner Dan Snyder is just one of the many donors who gave to Jeb Bush’s Right to Rise, fishing out $100,000 in contributions for the former Florida governor. Snyder donated to Mitt Romney’s campaign in 2012 and John McCain’s campaign in 2008. Other sports team owners to give to Bush’s Super PAC — Texas Rangers owner Ray Davis ($100,000), Houston Texans owner Robert “Bob” McNair ($500,000), and New York Jets owner Robert “Woody” Johnson ($501,604.27).

The long-time owner and founder of the Houston Texans, Bob McNair, besides giving to Jeb Bush’s Super PAC, decided to assist Lindsey Graham’s Super PAC “Security is Strength” with $500,000.
New York Mets owner Fred Wilpon pitched in $100,000 to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie’s Super PAC "America Leads".

4. Help A Brother Out

Family’s got your back when it comes to Super PACs.

Jeb Bush’s father, George H.W. and brother, George W., both made contributions to his Super PAC, Right to Rise. Bush 41 dropped $125,000 and Bush 43 gave $95,000.

Christie‘s Super PAC America Leads got one donor who’s known to defend his brother no matter what. Todd Christie showed some brotherly love by giving $100,000 to America Leads.

5. The Other Trumps

Marco Rubio’s Super PAC Conservative Solutions received quite the hefty donation from someone with the last name “Trump.” No, not his opponent. Records show Jules Trump, the chairman of the Trump Group, gave $25,000 to the Super PAC. The Trump group, according to its website, is a family-owned investment group established more than 40 years ago. And while Mr. Trump may share the same name and — similar business as the GOP candidate — the similarities end there. When the Real Deal contacted Mr. Trump to profile him, he responded “We’re very boring. We’re very different from Mr. Trump. He’s much more interesting. Go write about him.”

That same article also reveals that Donald Trump sued Jules and his brother Eddy to stop them from using their last name. He ultimately prevailed — the brothers had to relinquish their trademark but could still use the name.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Hillary Clinton paid roughly $57 million in federal and state taxes over the last eight years based on a statement just released by the Democratic presidential candidate’s campaign.
The statement does not say how much Clinton earned each year.

According to the returns, Bill and Hillary Clinton made an income of $140,937,785 over the past years.

During that period, Clinton paid roughly $43 million in federal taxes and roughly $13 million in state taxes. She made roughly $15 million in charitable donations.

The amount Clinton paid in taxes stands in stark contrast to a remark Clinton made last year when she told ABC News’ Diane Sawyer that she and her husband, Bill Clinton, were “dead broke” when they left the White House.

Clinton, who made most of her income after leaving the State Department by giving paid speeches averaging $250k a pop, later said that she regretted making that statement, although insisted it was accurate.

In her statement released Friday night, she reiterated that sentiment.

“We’ve come a long way from my days going door-to-door for the Children’s Defense Fund and earning $16,450 as a young law professor in Arkansas — and we owe it to the opportunities America provides,” Clinton said in the statement. “I want more Americans to have the chance to work hard and get ahead, just like we did. And reforming the tax code can help. We should be guided by some simple principles.”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Robin Marchant/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Presidential candidate Donald Trump wants a prominent chef to pay $10 million in damages after the food star bailed on plans to open a new restaurant inside Trump’s latest project in the nation’s capital.

Last year the group began $200 million in renovations on the historic Old Post Office Pavilion in downtown Washington. And within months, chef Jose Andres announced he would be opening a new restaurant inside the new Trump International Hotel.

At the time, Andres issued a press release saying he has “long respected Donald Trump for his business acumen” and was “proud to partner with him,” the lawsuit recounts.

But after Trump made controversial remarks in June suggesting illegal immigrants from Mexico are criminals and “rapists,” Andres backed out. Since then, the two sides have been in a contentious, behind-the-scenes back-and-forth, according to the lawsuit.

“Mr. Andres’ offense is curious in light of the fact that Mr. Trump’s publicly shared views on immigration have remained consistent for many years, and Mr. Trump’s willingness to frankly share his opinions is widely known,” the lawsuit states.

The lawsuit says the two sides entered into a 10-year agreement for Andres “to operate a … flagship restaurant” in a 9,018 square-foot space, and Andres “was obligated to use and occupy the [space] as a first class, high quality, flagship, top-tier Washington, D.C. restaurant.”

An email seeking comment from a representative for Andres late Friday was not immediately returned.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Joe Raedle/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The State Department released a third batch of highly sought after emails from former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's controversial private email account Friday.

Posted on the State Department's Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) website, the collection includes just over 1,300 emails all dated in 2009.

One email sent to Secretary Clinton in November of 2009 shows how then-Ambassador to Iraq Christopher Hill described Iraqis as "a collective pain in the neck." He also said, "I truly remain worried about people."

In late May, the State Department released nearly 300 of her emails in response to a House committee investigating the 2012 Benghazi terror attack, and in late June it published 2,000 additional emails, the start of a slow process to make all 55,000 pages of her emails public.

Last week, an internal investigator for the U.S. Intelligence Community asked the FBI to investigate Clinton's private account and said it found at least four clear examples of messages that contained classified information, claiming there could potentially be hundreds more.

Clinton, the front-runner for the Democratic presidential nomination, has said she never handled classified material on her private account and that she wants the State Department to make all the emails she turned over public as quickly as possible.

A federal judge presiding over a FOIA case brought by media outlets seeking Hillary Clinton’s 55,000 pages of emails ordered the State Department in May to release her emails in monthly tranches and to post all of the documents eligible for release on the department’s website by Jan. 29, 2016.

The State Department has since established a full-time staff, with one project manager, two case analysts, nine FOIA reviewers and a slew of additional information analysts who have been working since April to complete the task.

The 55,000 pages encompass more than 30,000 emails from then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s private email account, spanning from 2009 to 2013.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Lisa Lake/Getty Images for Massachusetts Conference for Women(NEW YORK) -- Hillary Clinton’s doctor says she has no lasting effects from a concussion she suffered while serving as secretary of state in 2012, backing up statements that she has made in the years since the incident.

A statement released on Friday by Clinton’s doctor detailing her current and past health record says the Democratic presidential candidate had follow-up testing from the injury that revealed a "complete resolution of the effects of the concussion.”

As a “precaution,” however, Clinton has continued to take a daily blood thinner, according to a letter from Clinton's doctor, Lisa Bardack, an internist and the Chairman of the Department of Medicine at the Mount Kisco Medical Group in Mount Kisco, New York.

Ill and dehydrated while suffering from a stomach virus in December 2012, Clinton fainted and fell at her home, sustaining a concussion, her spokesman and doctors announced at the time. After a follow-up exam revealed a blood clot in her head, requiring blood thinners and another hospital stay, Clinton returned work Jan. 7, 2013.

Last year, Clinton told ABC News’ Diane Sawyer has not experienced any sustained after-effects from the concussion.

“No lingering effects,” Clinton told Sawyer, when asked whether she had experienced any.

“No,” Clinton affirmed, when asked whether she still notices effects of any kind.

The concussion forced Clinton to wear glasses to treat double vision in the months following the incident.

In the statement, Bardack also notes that Clinton “does not use illicit drugs or tobacco products.” Bardack has been Clinton’s personal physician since 2001.

Clinton does, however, exercise regularly, including yoga, swimming, walking and weight training.

“She is excellent physical condition and fit to serve as President of the United States,” Bardack notes.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Alex Wong/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Could a debate over Planned Parenthood funding shut down the government? According to conservative Republicans in Congress, the answer is yes.

Many have been warning that they will hold up measures to fund the government past October if the legislation contains any taxpayer dollars for Planned Parenthood, which became the center of debate again after videos surfaced allegedly showing employees of the group discussing prices for fetal tissue and body parts.

“We can not and will not support any funding resolution ... that contains any funding for Planned Parenthood, including mandatory funding streams,” wrote 18 Republican House members to House leadership Wednesday.

This would present a major hurdle for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who has repeatedly pledged that the government would not shut down under GOP congressional stewardship.

“We're certainly not going to shut down the government or default on the national debt," he said during a March television interview.

More moderate Republicans and some centrist Democrats are reportedly already working on ways to avoid ending taxpayer funding for Planned Parenthood outright, but focus instead on removing just funding that goes to clinics that engage in fetal-tissue procurement, according to National Journal, which also notes that Senate Republican leadership has not yet approved the legislation.

Whether a compromise is reached or not, the issue is already becoming a fight for which Democrats, who largely support federal funding to Planned Parenthood, are steeling themselves.

“This is just presidential Republican primary politics finding their way onto the Senate floor,” Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Connecticut, said Friday.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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YURI GRIPAS/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- President Obama signed the short term Highway Reauthorization Act, which will provide $8 billion in federal funding for highway and infrastructure repairs until October 29.  While he said the three month funding is a “good thing,” the president said Congress needs to stop its patchwork funding for transportation projects.

“That’s a good thing because if this wasn’t in front of me and ready for signature, we would end up having projects all across the country that would close,” the president said in the Oval Office. “I want to make sure that before I sign this, Congress gets a clear message – we should not be leaving all the business of the U.S. government until the last minute.”

“We can’t keep on funding transportation by the seat of our pants, three months on a time. It’s not just how the greatest country on earth should be doing its business,” he later added.

The president noted that Congress is going on its August recess with major issues left undone – like the budget and the Export-Import Bank – and urged them to work on a plan over their recess and come back with a “spirit of compromise.”

“Congress has had all year to do a budget and yet Congress is leaving on vacation without the budget done and when they get back they’re going to have about 2 weeks in order to do the people’s business,” he said.

“Although I wish Congress well during the next six weeks, they probably deserve some time with their families and to refuel a little bit,” he said before adding he hopes they come back with a plan to “sit down and negotiate a budget.”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Where will the 2016 presidential candidates be on Friday?

Read below to find out their campaign schedules:

  • In Tinley Park, Illinois the Black Conservative R.I.S.E Initiative Conference will feature retired neurosurgeon Ben Carson and Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee. Also called the “All Lives Matter Conference,” it is a conservative gathering of African American anti-abortion activists.
  • Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum, South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie and Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul have a packed day in Iowa with stops across the state.
  • Ohio Gov. John Kasich is in New Hampshire.
  • Donald Trump remains off the trail in Scotland with no event scheduled.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Stockbyte/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Friday is the deadline for super PACs to file campaign-finance disclosures covering the first half of the year.

By midnight, we should have a solid tally of who's up and who's down in the money race, judged by campaign and super PAC fundraising combined.

The campaigns disclosed their numbers two weeks ago, and some of the super PACs have already leaked their totals, but Friday's Federal Election Commission filings will supply much fuller context on the money race.

Plus, we'll get to see who the biggest donors are at this point in the 2016 race -- one that figures to shatter previous records for election spending.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The Hillary Clinton e-mail saga continues.

The State Department will release the next batch of Clinton’s e-mails from her tenure as secretary of state on Friday.

The last batch revealed little in the way of hard news but some interesting bits of flavor from her daily life as secretary.

The release is part of a federal court-ordered rollout that will make 55,000 pages of Clinton’s emails available on the department’s website by Jan. 29, 2016.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Joe Raedle/Getty Images(FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla.) -- Appearing in the same city and at the same event as Jeb Bush on Friday, Hillary Clinton took aim at the candidate who could be her future Republican presidential rival in the state where he lives and governed for eight years.

Without mentioning Bush by name, Clinton sunk her teeth into a phrase that has become synonymous with the Bush campaign.

“I don’t think you can credibly say that everybody has a right to rise and then say you’re for phasing out Medicare or for repealing Obamacare,” Clinton said at a gathering of the National Urban League, referring to the name of Bush’s Super PAC, as well as a line he often uses in his campaign speech, “Right to Rise.”

“They can’t rise if the minimum wage is too low to live on. They can’t rise if their governor makes it harder for them to get a college education. And you cannot seriously talk about the right to rise, and support laws that deny the right to vote,” she continued.

Bush, who delivered remarks to members of the non-partisan civil rights group shortly after Clinton, did not offer a direct response to her. But his campaign did.

“These are just more false, cheap political shots to distract from the fact that Secretary Clinton has no record of accomplishment to run on this race,” spokeswoman Allie Brandenburger said in a statement. “The Urban League deserved better today.”

Later Friday, Clinton plans to deliver a speech in Miami meant to tweak Bush and other Republicans. She will call for a lifting of a full-scale end to the U.S. embargo with Cuba.

“The Cuba embargo needs to go, once and for all. We should replace it with a smarter approach that empowers the Cuban private sector, Cuban civil society, and the Cuban-American community to spur progress and keep pressure on the regime," Clinton said in her speech. "Today I am calling on Speaker Boehner and Senator McConnell to step up and answer the pleas of the Cuban people.”

Bush is opposed to the restoration of diplomatic relations with Cuba.

“It’s insulting to many residents of Miami for Hillary Clinton to come here to endorse a retreat in the struggle for democracy in Cuba,” Bush said in a statement. “This city has become a home and a refuge to thousands and thousands of Castro’s victims. Secretary Clinton’s call to abandon the embargo -- and the principles of democracy and freedom for the Cuban people -- in exchange for nothing in return from the regime in Havana adds insult to the pain they and their families feel.”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- A boiling standoff between Republican leaders in the House and Senate is settling.

In a 65-34 vote, the Senate on Thursday passed a long-term, $350 billion highway funding bill that would last six years. The move now sets up discussions with the House over the future course of transportation funding.

"The House has now indicated as a result of our passing a multi-year bill, they intend to do it in early September and we'll go to conference. And the goal of the conference obviously will be to get a result," Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said after the vote.

The House began its summer recess on Thursday; senators will begin theirs next Friday.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Scott Olson/Getty Images(MIAMI) -- Hillary Clinton will deliver a speech in Miami on Friday, calling on Congress to end the trade embargo with Cuba.

Given that Republicans have forcefully criticized President Obama's rapprochement, this will draw some bright lines between Clinton and GOP rivals in a major general election state with a big Cuban-American population that also happens to be Jeb Bush's and Marco Rubio's backyard.

According to excerpts of her speech, the former secretary of state will say, "The Cuba embargo needs to go, once and for all. We should replace it with a smarter approach that empowers the Cuban private sector, Cuban civil society, and the Cuban-American community to spur progress and keep pressure on the regime."

"Today I am calling on Speaker Boehner and Senator McConnell to step up and answer the pleas of the Cuban people," Clinton plans to say. "By large majorities, they want a closer relationship with America. They want to buy our goods, read our books, surf our web, and learn from our people. They want to bring their country into the 21st century. That is the road toward democracy and dignity. We should walk it together."

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Photo by Bob Levey/Getty Images(KENNEBUNKPORT, Maine) -- Former President George H.W. Bush tweeted on Thursday thanking those who sent him get-well messages following his fall earlier this month.

Bush tweeted a smiling photo in which he gives two thumbs up, captioned "who knew jumping out of planes was safer than getting out of bed? Thanks to all for your kind get-well messages." In the photo, Bush can be seen wearing a neck brace.

The 41st president has gone skydiving multiple times, including on his 90th birthday.

Bush fell at his Kennebunkport summer home on July 15.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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Protesters place stuffed animals on the sign of Dr. Walter Palmer's River Bluff Dental Clinic to call attention to the alleged poaching of Cecil the lion on July 29, 2015 in Bloomington, Minnesota. (Photo by Adam Bettcher/Getty Images)(WASHINGTON) -- The petition calling for the extradition of Walter Palmer, the Minnesota dentist who recently admitted to killing Cecil the Lion in Zimbabwe, has surpassed 100,000 signatures, meaning the White House will have to respond to the petition.

“We urge the Secretary of State John Kerry and the Attorney General Loretta Lynch to fully cooperate with the Zimbabwe authorities and to extradite Walter Palmer promptly at the Zimbabwe government's request,” the petition reads.

The petition was started on July 28 and currently has over 140,000 signatures.

White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest said the petition has “reached the threshold” that would warrant a response but did not offer a time frame. He did note that decisions about prosecution and extradition are made at the DOJ.

The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service, which has offered assistance to Zimbabwe in its investigation, has asked Palmer to contact them "immediately."

"The U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service is investigating the circumstances surrounding the killing of 'Cecil the lion,'" the agency told ABC News in a statement Thursday. "At this point in time, however, multiple efforts to contact Dr. Walter Palmer have been unsuccessful. We ask that Dr. Palmer or his representative contact us immediately."

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.


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