Senate Majority Leader Harry ReidHarry ReidNo GOP leaders attending Shimon Peres funeral Overnight Regulation: Feds finalize rule expanding sick leave Anti-trade senators say chamber would be crazy to pass TPP MORE (D-Nev.) on Thursday said people should not beat up on casino magnate Sheldon Adelson, asserting there is a distinction between billionaire activists.
Reid has been a harsh critic of Charles and David Koch, the billionaire brothers who have poured millions of dollars into conservative causes ahead of the 2014 midterms. He has continuously called them out of the Senate floor and attempted to brand them as the new face of the GOP.
"I know Sheldon Adelson," Harry Reid said in an interview with MSNBC. "He's not in this for money … He's in it because he has certain ideological views. Sheldon Adelson's social views are in keeping with the Democrats on choice on all kinds of things. So Sheldon Adelson, don't pick on him. He's not in it to make money."
Adelson was a huge donor to GOP presidential candidates in 2012, first donating millions to a super-PAC supporting Newt Gingrich then supporting Mitt Romney. Overall he donated more than $90 million during the 2012 presidential campaign.
The Washington Post on Wednesday highlighted his donations to governors and attorney generals around the country in an effort to boost opposition to the legalization of online gambling.
Reid also addressed former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's presidential prospects in 2016.
"Everybody knows I love the Clintons, and I don't need to say more," he said.
When asked if he believes Clinton should face a primary if she decides to run again, Reid said the Democratic primary between Clinton and President Obama in 2008 was healthy.
"I believe that the primary that was with Obama and Clinton was an extremely healthy process," he said. "I think it was wonderful."