The Terrorist’s Candidate
Who gets Bill Ayers' campaign cash? Only The One.


Deroy Murdock

Barack Obama’s critics appropriately have spotlighted the Democratic nominee’s ties to William Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, the remorseless co-founders and leaders of the terrorist Weather Underground. However, Obama’s detractors largely overlook Ayers’ campaign contribution to Obama.

On April 2, 2001, Ayers donated $200 to Obama’s Illinois State Senate re-election campaign. Though not a jackpot, this represents Ayers’ only recorded political contribution. Here is how the Illinois State Board of Elections discloses this contribution on its website (which you can find by searching here):


Contributed By


Received By


Ayers, William
1329 E. 50th Street
Chicago, IL 60615



Friends of Barack Obama


Multiple searches of this state-level database show that Ayers donated to no other candidate – neither incumbent nor challenger. Similar searches of the websites of the Federal Elections Commission, The Center for Responsive Politics (, and indicate that Ayers has made no disclosed contribution to any federal campaign.

Ayers may have made small donations below Springfield’s $150 and Washington, D.C.’s $200 reporting thresholds. Be that as it may, Ayers’ $200 gift to Obama is his only recorded donation.

Why is this important?

First, recall Ayers’ actions. As a leader of the Weathermen, Ayers inspired, instructed, and directed a domestic-terrorist network that bombed no fewer than 18 locations. Among them: the U.S. Capitol, the Pentagon, the State Department, National Guard headquarters, the Presidio Army Base, plus New York’s Queens County Courthouse, the 103rd Precinct, and the headquarters of ITT and the NYPD. A bomb prematurely detonated on Greenwich Village’s West 11th Street on March 7, 1970, killing three Weathermen. The nail-filled device was supposed to blast an Officers’ Club dance at New Jersey’s Fort Dix Army Base. It would have maimed and likely killed scores of GIs and their dates and spouses.

Had it exploded on schedule, Ayers said it would have torn “through windows and walls and, yes, people too.”

Ayers and Dohrn co-wrote a book in 1974 called Prairie Fire: The Politics of Revolutionary Anti-Imperialism. As Fox News Channel’s Hannity & Colmes reported Thursday night, Ayers and Dohrn dedicated their book “to all political prisoners in the US,” among them Sirhan Sirhan, the man who assassinated New York Senator Robert F. Kennedy in 1968.

The Weather Underground’s October 20, 1981, robbery of $1.6 million from a Brink’s armored car triggered a shootout in Nyack, New York, that killed guard Peter Paige and Nyack policemen Waverly Brown and Edward O’Grady.

Ayers laments nothing.  “I don’t regret setting bombs,” he said in 2001. “I feel we didn’t do enough.”

Second, despite all this, Obama associated with Ayers, on the boards of Chicago’s Woods Fund and the $160 million Chicago Annenberg Challenge, to which Ayers helped appoint Obama chairman of the board. Obama praised Ayers’ book, A Kind and Just Parent: The Children of Juvenile Court, in the December 21, 1997 Chicago Tribune. He described it as: “A searing and timely account of the juvenile court system, and the courageous individuals who rescue hope from despair.” Ayers and Dohrn — his radical, violent, and equally unrepentant wife — welcomed Obama to their Chicago home for a 1995 reception that launched his first Illinois State Senate bid.

Obama has struggled to explain why he stood in the living room of an unapologetic bomb thrower.

“This is a guy who lives in my neighborhood,” Obama stated dismissively on April 16. Campaign strategist David Axelrod told CNN on October 6 that Obama “certainly didn’t know the history” of Ayers. On October 9, Obama pivoted afresh and told radio host Michael Smerconish: “Ultimately, I ended up learning about the fact that [Ayers] had engaged in this reprehensible act 40 years ago, but I was eight years old at the time, and I assumed that he had been rehabilitated.”