Despite the contentious environment in Berkeley Springs, donation data provided by Center for Media and Democracy (CMD) to Hatewatch should give those in town opposed to VDARE’s ideology reason for cautious optimism.
The hate group surged in prominence during the Trump era, due to the Republican Party’s embrace of hardline anti-immigrant views. Trump’s authority also presented the Brimelows with a bounty of unique opportunities. Not only has he met with such figures as Stephen Miller, Julia Hahn and Larry Kudlow, the government under Trump forgave $76,106 worth of PPP loans to Happy Penguins LLC, one of at least three LLCs attached to Lydia Brimelow.
Following the $4.5 million VDARE hauled in during 2019, and their purchase of the castle in February 2020, donations have declined, according to David Armiak from CMD. Armiak noted to Hatewatch that DonorsTrust, which is tied to the right-wing Koch and Mercer empires, gave $1.5 million to VDARE in 2019, but gave only $75,000 and $33,000 to them in 2020 and 2021, respectively. National Philanthropic Trust, another Koch network-connected vehicle, gave VDARE $50,000 in 2019. They gave VDARE nothing in 2020. Donations from Vanguard Charitable Endowment Program declined from $39,797.65 in 2019 to $23,500 in 2020. (Some 2021 records were unavailable at the time Hatewatch reported this story.)