“I feel that I no longer wish to support your presidential campaign and ask that you please return the maximum contribution that I gave to you last year,” Bill White wrote to GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney in a letter requesting the return of a $2,500 donation. “You have chosen to be on the wrong side of history and I do not support your run for president any longer.”
White, CEO of the Constellations Group and former president of the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum and a longtime veterans advocate.
From his bio:
He serves as a Trustee of the Fisher House Foundation, which builds comfort homes for patient families at military and veterans hospitals. He has raised $42 million for the construction of Fisher Houses and its endowment and maintenance funding.
Bill serves on the boards of the News Corporation Global Diversity Council Advisory Board, The Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund, SKIP of NYC, the Friends of the Hudson River Park, the Catholic Medical Mission Board, the Fisher Alzheimer’s Disease Research Foundation at Rockefeller University, NYC & Co, the Fisher House Foundation and the Intrepid Relief Fund.
He has visited the troops in Iraq and Afghanistan and helped lead the first major entertainers visit to troops fighting in Iraq, featuring Robert DeNiro, Kid Rock & Wayne Newton. Just recently Bill organized with the USO a Christmas 2010 visit to Afghanistan with Mark Wahlberg for the troops to preview his new critically acclaimed movie “The Fighter”. In May 2009, White was offered the opportunity to serve in the Obama Administration by Defense Secretary Robert Gates as the Pentagon’s Deputy Chief Management Officer.
Oh, and White’s also openly gay. He and partner Bryan Eure married at the Four Season in New York in October. It was kind of a big deal—Barbara Walters, Gayle King and Aretha Franklin were there.
White contacted Romney about returning his contribution after the candidate affirmed his belief that marriage is between one man and one woman in the wake of President Obama’s marriage-equality endorsement.
He told CNN he plays the field politically, supporting Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush in the past, and was feeling ambivalent about Obama:
“I felt we gave ‘Hope and Change’ a chance and I was looking for something different,” White said.
“Quite frankly, I was not supporting Barack Obama – I was supporting Mitt Romney. And my support is not just words or my vote, it’s also putting my money where my mouth is.”
But after the President came out in favor of gay marriage—and Romney reiterated his stance at a commencement address at Liberty University—White realized he couldn’t stand by the ex-governor any more.
Really? Like Romney’s stance on marriage equality was some kind of mystery until this week? He might be Mormon, but Mitt’s been pushing the one man-one woman thing for a while now.
Don’t lose any sleep waiting for that check to come, Mr. White.
Photo: Bill White