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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Biden begins California fundraising swing after $42 million haul

U.S. President Joe Biden and first lady Jill Biden walk across the South Lawn while returning to the White House on Feb. 19, 2024, in Washington, D.C. The Bidens returned to the White House after spending the weekend in Delaware.    (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images North America/TNS)
By Bill Allison Bloomberg News

President Joe Biden raised $42 million for his reelection campaign and the Democratic Party in January and now heads to the West Coast for events with deep-pocketed donors, including billionaire Haim Saban and entertainment mogul Casey Wasserman.

Biden ended January with a $130 million war chest for his reelection effort, according a statement released by the campaign. That’s a record amount for a Democratic candidate at this point in the calendar.

The president had his best month to date among small-dollar donors, which can be a barometer of grassroots support. The campaign added more than 1 million emails to its fundraising list, and now has 158,000 donors who’ve committed to making monthly contributions, nearly twice the number it had at this point four years ago.

Biden will continue his fundraising efforts this week. He is scheduled to attend a fundraiser chaired by Saban, who brought the Power Rangers to U.S. televisions, and Wasserman, the chairman of the 2028 Los Angeles Olympic organizing committee. Tickets start at $3,300 and top out at $250,000 for the top level. The president will also attend an event with venture capitalist Steve Westly and Klein Financial Corporation’s Bob Klein on Thursday in Los Altos, California.

The January total includes money raised for his campaign and the Democratic Party. Biden has raised $278 million since launching his reelection bid in April. All presidential campaigns are due to report detailed information on their finances to the Federal Election Commission by midnight Tuesday.

Biden’s haul easily tops the $16.5 million that former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley raised. Donald Trump, the Republican frontrunner, has not yet announced a January total, but previously reported he began the year with $33 million in the bank.

Biden has been able to preserve much of the campaign cash he has raised in recent months while both Haley and Trump have had to shell out during the Republican primary. Both are spending money ahead of the South Carolina primary on Saturday. Haley has spent $5.3 million in the state in recent weeks according to AdImpact, compared to $843,000 for Trump.

“While Team Biden-Harris continues to build on its fundraising machine, Republicans are divided,” Biden campaign manager Julie Chavez Rodriguez said in the statement.

The campaign is dispatching top administration allies as it ramps up fundraising efforts. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo is expected to appear at upcoming events, including a Tuesday fundraiser in Washington, DC and a March 4 event in New York with Berkshire Group’s George Krupp and Balbec Capital LP’s Warren Spector, according to invitations obtained by Bloomberg News.

Vice President Kamala Harris’s husband Doug Emhoff is also slated to participate in events in Washington and Minneapolis, Minnesota later this month.

Anna Wintour, editor-in-chief of Vogue, will participate in a Biden fundraiser in Paris on March 4, according to an invitation. The event is tied to Paris Fashion Week, the city’s semiannual event where designers present the latest creations in high fashion.


(—With assistance from Pierre Paulden, Hadriana Lowenkron, Amanda Gordon (Hr) and Karen Breslau.)