Want to dine with a top Democrat? It will cost you
In the past week, the Connecticut Democratic Party made $40,000 off political insiders who want to dine with Gov. Ned Lamont and Lt. Gov. Susan Bysiewicz at an upcoming fundraiser.
Tickets to dine with Lamont at the
2019 John Bailey Dinner on June 21 cost $2,500. The 10 ticketed spots at his table have been sold.
The Lamont tickets cost more than the $2,000 payment needed to dine with U.S. Sens. Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal. And they’re more expensive than the $1,500 needed to for sitting with any of Connecticut’s five Democratic members of the U.S. House of Representatives.
Lamont’s ticket price makes the
$1,000 for VIP access to a reception with U.S. Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi — one of the most influential people in national politics and the fundraiser’s keynote speaker — seem almost a bargain.
By the way, $1,000 will also buy a seat with Connecticut’s secretary of the state, attorney general, comptroller and treasurer and top legislative leaders.
All 10 tickets to dine with Bysiewicz for $1,500 a head have sold.
Fundraisers like these fuel Connecticut Democrats to support political campaigns, advertising and outreach. Every year for decades, the party has held a fundraiser like the John Bailey dinner.
“This is a fundraiser that usually has about 700 to 800 people attending and provides funding for party operations,” said Patty McQueen, spokeswoman for the party. “We provide many other opportunities for political access that are free, including tele-town halls, campaign training, lower dollar fundraisers as well.”
General admission tickets for the dinner cost $200. Over several years, the price of general admission has risen from $175.
The Republican equivalent of the fundraiser is the Prescott Bush dinner, which was last held in September at the Stamford Marriott hotel and was attended by about 360 Republicans. Some VIP tickets for that event cost $10,000. Dinner with the event’s speaker, Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts, cost $5,000.
But even those prices pale to the $25,000 minimum donation needed to access a secretive fundraising dinner held by New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo in March, the New York Times reported.