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Top GOP donor Hubbard explains his switch to Trump: ‘I don’t agree with the way he did it. But he did it.’

Stanley Hubbard

Stanley S. Hubbard himself might consider it breaking news. On Monday, the chairman and CEO of Hubbard Broadcasting — a leader in the Dump-Trump effort — joined the advisory committee of Great America PAC, the pro-Donald Trump SuperPAC.

“I just agreed with [Trump PAC organizer] Ed Rollins this morning to be on a committee, the first Trump PAC,” Hubbard said in an interview with MinnPost. “I said, ‘Yeah, I’ll do that as an advisor,’ and we’ll see how much money I have to give.”

Earlier, Hubbard gave $10,000 to Our Principles PAC, which was attempting to defeat Trump. He was also an early backer of Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker’s presidential campaign, and eventually donated money to several of the Republican candidates for president. He didn’t like Trump’s style and some of the extreme positions he staked out.

But now, he says, he has no choice.

“Every one of my favorite candidates dropped out, one by one by one,” he said. “It means I have to back Donald Trump because I’m worried about more government regulation. I’m worried about more of the same, which I think Mrs. Clinton would bring. And I’m worried who’s going to select the new Supreme Court Justice.”

Hubbard, who is one of the country’s most prolific political donors, stresses that he is not a Republican, and says his views tend toward the libertarian. 

“I determine who’s going to vote the way I think and speak the way I think the country should go,” he said. “That is, in my opinion: more freedom, less regulation, more freedom for investors to invest and create businesses and opportunities for other people so everybody can get ahead, not just the rich. I’m for the little guy becoming the big guy.”

“Harry Truman would be a great president,” he said. “I could vote for Harry Truman today.”

Instead, Hubbard says he will vote for Trump — and try to persuade others to do the same. Here’s more from our interview.

MinnPost: Do you think Trump is going to be a good President?
Stanley Hubbard: I think anybody would be better than Clinton. I think he’ll moderate himself. He’s been in business long enough to know you have to listen to others, which he does.  And he’s spent his whole life promoting Donald Trump, which he knows how to promote. If I were Hillary, I’d be very nervous.

MP: Is Trump going to change the Republican Party?
SH: If he doesn’t get elected he’s not going to affect that much. If he gets elected, he’ll have a great effect; we’ll have to wait and see. Hopefully, it will be a common sense effect.

MinnPost: What about down-ticket candidates, candidates that you are interested in?
SH: I think it would be foolish to walk away from Trump. You want to lose, walk away from the candidate. He won it fair and square. I don’t agree with the way he did it. But he did it.

MinnPost: Have you met Trump?
SH: Yes. I was invited … to explain to Donald Trump how he could use satellite to set up a network to start a new football league. It was a great idea. But Trump didn’t like it. He was polite and he listened. 

MinnPost:  Do you want to meet with him again?
SH: I don’t have to meet with him. He has to do what he does. If he asks for my opinion, I’ll give him my telephone number. I don’t think he’s going to call me. Trump’s not going to come to see me. I’m just a very minor cog.

Comments (19)

  1. Submitted by Edward Blaise on 05/10/2016 - 08:56 am.

    C’mon Cyndy

    Couldn’t you have asked at least one question on his views on his former employee and CD2 endorsed candidate Jason Lewis?

  2. Submitted by Bill Schletzer on 05/10/2016 - 09:08 am.

    Apparently Hubbard has abandoned “Our Principles”….

    for a guy with no principles. He’s worried about Clintons Supreme Court choice, but he better worry about Trump’s. With Trump’s personality and background I think we can expect someone like Judge Judy to be his nomination.

    • Submitted by Dennis Tester on 05/10/2016 - 09:49 am.

      I’m not alone

      in saying that Judge Judy would be preferable to the 3 lefty potted plants they have on there now.

      Given Clinton’s promise to kill gun rights in this country, all she would need would be one vote on the court to overturn Heller and your right to carry will be gone.

      This is the primary reason republican voters demanded that the republican-controlled senate not approve the appointment of Merrick Garland, a known gun-grabber.

      That’s all the principle any constitutionalist would need to vote for Hillary’s opponent, whoever he is.

      • Submitted by Bill Schletzer on 05/10/2016 - 11:55 am.

        It’s not my right to carry I’m worried about…

        …because I don’t carry. It’s the right of the psycho who shot out my tire while chasing and murdering his fiancé in Plymouth back in March. It’s the crazy woman who let her toddler get ahold of a gun from his seat in her car and shoot her in the back. It is the yahoo who dropped his gun in Target a while back. It’s you if I make you mad enough to lose your temper while armed. When I grew up in the 50s there were restrictions on who could carry concealed or unconcealed weapons. Somewhere along the way those restrictions were lost, thousands of lives were lost and the NRA people can’t stop whining about their rights.

        None of those people I just mentioned are carrying because they are part of a well-regulated militia and I would support anything to take their handguns away from them.

      • Submitted by Jackson Cage on 05/10/2016 - 01:47 pm.

        Now THAT’S funny

        I’m always impressed by the contortions a “Constitutionalist” makes while fully supporting made-from-thin-air gun rights.

  3. Submitted by Frank Phelan on 05/10/2016 - 09:50 am.

    Freedom Adgenda? Oh Really?

    Mr. Hubbard claims to support a “freedom agenda”, but his action belie his words. Both Walker and trump support laws that insert the government into contracts between private parties. What else do we call it when a labor union and a private business agree to a union security clause but the state steps in and says that is not legal?

    Further, the same laws compel speech by private parties in defense of individuals who refuse to pay for that same defense. Because when the government demands that a union defend a non-agency paying free rider, what else do we call that but a confiscation of private property? If my condo association, through it’s by-laws, tells me that my share of the roof is $5,000, would Mr. Hubbard defend my “freedom” to not pay? If the city re-builds my crumbling street and asses my a share of the cost based in part on the increased property value, will Mr. Hubbard defend my “freedom” to keep my wealth from government confiscation?

    Mr. Hubbard favors freedom for some in some cases, if it benefits the wealthy.

  4. Submitted by beryl john-knudson on 05/10/2016 - 10:36 am.

    “Do you think Trump is going to be a good president?”

    Now there’s a fine question whomever asks it or can answer with a straight face…

  5. Submitted by Jim Million on 05/10/2016 - 10:39 am.


    How many readers generally read a piece in full before responding?
    Hubbard’s rationale is the thesis here, not his public image or significant business accomplishments (think satellite trucks).

    Hubbard may be the best local example of moneyed moguls, who fundamentally dislike Trump’s antics, doing what is pragmatic to stop HRC. Can anyone offer an example of those who backed Bernie swinging back to the inevitable HRC? Must be some in process, at least. Maybe a bit soon to identify.

    Seems like government regulations and SCOTUS are common motivations all over the map across the spectrum this year, simply differing in specifics and degrees.

    • Submitted by Jackson Cage on 05/10/2016 - 01:50 pm.

      Then answer me this, Jim

      What are the Donald’s opinions and policies on regulations and a SCOTUS appointee? And which day are you referring to, cuz those opinions change at least that frequently.

  6. Submitted by Hiram Foster on 05/10/2016 - 11:09 am.


    I would have been interested if Mr. Hubbard had been asked if he favors the elimination of regulations that protect his broadcast licenses. Given his various interests, by the way, I don’t rule out the possibility that he might well be for opening up competition.

  7. Submitted by Joel Stegner on 05/10/2016 - 01:24 pm.


    Of course, some Republicans are gong to cave in and support Trump, no matter how bad a candidate they really think he is, because he is a white rich male like them. Stop Hillary is about trying to stop the changes that means that family money men like Hubbard don’t control things. He just want to control things and have his small world run smoothly without outside interference.

    He is just as self centered as Trump. As long as he continues to control his little pond, he couldn’t care less about what is going on in the rest of the nation or the world.

  8. Submitted by C.S. Senne on 05/10/2016 - 01:45 pm.


    “If he gets elected, he’ll have a great effect; we’ll have to wait and see. Hopefully, it will be a common sense effect.” Yes, thusfar, Trump is all about presidential “common sense.” What does Stanley think about the Donald’s toying with the idea of defaulting on the national debt, I wonder. Is that “common sense” or just another clown-car distraction thrown out to see what sticks?

  9. Submitted by Carrie Preston on 05/10/2016 - 02:05 pm.

    He Caved

    “I think anyone would be better than Clinton”

    I am hearing alot of that. Still not a good enough reason to openly back Trump.

    But I am happy that Hubbard at least has a respectful tone toward the democratic candidate such as calling her Mrs. Clinton. I know it’s a small thing,but some Republicans (especially those that back Trump) are insulting and mean when even speaking her name.

  10. Submitted by Jon Kingstad on 05/10/2016 - 02:52 pm.

    Trump Presidency for Hubbard

    I can’t imagine Stanley Hubbard feeling much of any threat from a Trump Presidency. My guess is that like other oligarchs, he will secretly make sure that HRC and the Democratic Party also get something, just like Rupert Murdoch has done. You can’t take any chances so you must hedge your bets. That’s the great thing about being uberrich: it really doesn’t make any difference in the end who wins as long as they’re not a Communist or a Socialist.

    Hubbard apparently sees no irony in complaining about government regulations when his wealth has been created by and is dependent upon government regulations. On the other hand, I suppose those who are excessively wealthy do feel burdened or oppressed by being owned by their possessions.

  11. Submitted by James McCorkell on 05/10/2016 - 08:13 pm.

    How does Hubbard get so much press?

    For the life of me I can’t figure out how Hubbard gets so much press. He’s hardly a major donor relative to his wealth. According to a Strib glowing feature on him earlier this year, his annual political giving is the equivalent of me giving about $100 annually.

    Why glorify him? Why refer to him as such a MAJOR donor. He gives the absolute least he can, and yet still gets all this recognition, and of course, every politician in America will take his calls and essentially do whatever he wants.

    It’s totally insane, and makes the best possible case for campaign finance reform!

  12. Submitted by Craig Johnson on 05/11/2016 - 09:17 am.

    Ink by the barrel

    Hubbard, whose broadcast empire includes many radio and television stations throughout the country speaks with a loud voice. Unrepentant influence on editorial policy in the news department makes him a major influence throughout the country. Hubbard, described as a nice, quiet guy is anything but. His interest is in protecting his economic interests.

    Of course this is all understandable, but the shallowness of conviction reveals the narrow focus of his political interests. While literally all great leaders understand the adage that “a rising tide floats all boats”, self aggrandizement never contributes to great character or lasting legacy.

    Ms. Brucato, a former employee of Hubbard compiled a puff piece on Hubbard. We could have asked for more but only got what we could have expected

  13. Submitted by Todd Adler on 05/11/2016 - 11:49 am.


    Hubbard doesn’t really care whether or not regulations are reduced so the little guy can invest in markets. When was the last time you saw some minimum wage slave with 50¢ to invest in stocks? Heck, even many middle class people don’t have excess disposable income to invest. What’s the median investment in 401k plans?

    A whopping $18,000.

    So really what Hubbard is saying is he wants to reduce government regulations so wealthy people like him can game the system without any oversight and create yet more wealth for themselves. It’s the old adage that it takes money to make money and Hubbard has it and the common Joe does not.

    In the meantime he’ll want to further reduce regulations, such as minimum wage, universal health care, and so on because he feels it’s bad for business. I’m sorry if I’m not that impressed by libertarianism of all stripes. Many are too young to remember or haven’t studied history that much, but we’ve been through the whole “low regulation” crap and that lead to the robber barons of the late 1800s and the Great Depression of the 1930s.

    Let’s not repeat those wonderful times, m’k?

  14. Submitted by Jim Million on 05/11/2016 - 11:58 am.

    Reflex Reflux Here?

    “Hubbard, described as a nice, quiet guy is anything but”.

    Know him personally?

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