Cashing In on the Olympics

Event concession holders and colleagues who cashed in on the 2002 Salt Lake City Olympics are repaying former Olympics CEO Mitt Romney.

Fraser Bullock—the Bain Capital colleague Romney hired as the Salt Lake Organizing Committee’s (SLOC) chief operating officer—and his family have provided Romney $210,275 in political contributions. Bullock also “bundled” an additional $568,897 from friends, business associates, and investors in his private equity fund.

Sead Dizdarevic was offered immunity from prosecution after admitting to federal investigators that he contributed $131,000 to Romney’s predecessors, who were indicted for funneling money to the International Olympic Committee.

Romney was critical of the previous SLOC execs, yet refused to look into Dizdarevic’s dealings with them before offering his New Jersey–based travel agency a near-monopoly concession on Olympic ticket packages. Dizdarevic, his friends, and family have contributed $221,800 to Romney’s various campaigns.

Bullock also raised money retail, co-hosting an “Olympic Reunion” Mitt Romney fundraiser at $1,000 a ticket early this year in Salt Lake City.

There are other Olympic donors. But we know that Bullock, Dizdarevic, and their families and associates provided $1 million—not including what they might be giving to superPACs not required to disclose donor names.

Source:Romney Saved Salt Lake Olympics from Scandal, But at What Price?” by Wayne Barrett in The Daily Beast, April 12, 2012
Also in this issue: Romney’s Olympic Events: Deception and Dirty Politics and Zinc Into Gold