2020 total spending: N/A
The group is a hybrid PAC, or “Carey committee,” meaning it can function both as a super PAC — raising and spending unlimited sums for independent expenditures— and as a traditional PAC — giving money directly to campaigns — as long as it maintains distinct bank accounts for each purpose.
As a hybrid PAC, the group is required to disclose its donors and independent expenditures to the Federal Election Commission.
Protect Our Future PAC’s spokesperson, Mike Levine, told us in an email that the PAC’s “ultimate goal” is for the candidates it supports to “advance federal funding and policy proposals that prevent future pandemics.”
Michael Sadowsky, a career political strategist and data scientist, serves as the group’s president. Previously, he worked as a strategist for Guarding Against Pandemics, which is partly financed by billionaire Sam Bankman-Fried.
Since founding Alameda Research, a cryptocurrency trading firm, and FTX, a cryptocurrency exchange, Bankman-Fried has acquired an estimated net worth of $21 billion, which he has used, in part, to back political campaigns. In the 2020 presidential election, Bankman-Fried was one of Joe Biden’s largest donors, giving $5 million to a Democratic hybrid PAC that spent more than $100 million on advertisements during the final five weeks of the election. He has contributed to Senate Republicans as well.
Bankman-Fried has provided Protect Our Future PAC with the majority of its donations. The group has raised $28 million for the 2022 election cycle as of June 30, with $23 million from Bankman-Fried. Nishad Singh, who serves as head of engineering at FTX, has donated another $1 million.
Levine told us that “Protect Our Future has no specific fundraising target for 2022,” and “it will continue to seek and allocate funds in whatever way furthers its goal of preventing future pandemics.” The group has “no current plans” to spend money in the general election.
“Protect Our Future takes candidate endorsements by Guarding Against Pandemics into account and then allocates resources in whatever way Protect Our Future believes will increase the chances of its champions being elected,” Levine said.
The PAC has spent $10.5 million, about half of the group’s independent expenditures through July 21, in support of Democrat Carrick Flynn in his unsuccessful primary bid in the highly funded Oregon 6th Congressional District race. Like Protect Our Future PAC, Flynn has stated that his “‘first priority is pandemic prevention.’”
The PAC spent nearly $940,000 against Flynn’s opponent, Oregon state Rep. Andrea Salinas. These expenditures represent the only instance in which Protect our Future PAC has spent money against a Democratic candidate.
The group also has spent money in support of Rep. Lucy McBath, who is running for reelection in Georgia, and Robert Garcia and Valerie Foushee, who are running for House seats representing California and North Carolina, respectively. All of them won their Democratic primaries.
So far, the group hasn’t made any direct contributions to candidates through its traditional PAC arm.