canada africa partner reservation President Biden comes to Chicago for fundraising Wednesday; VP Harris arrives for North Shore financier on May 16

President Biden comes to Chicago for fundraising Wednesday; VP Harris arrives for North Shore financier on May 16


A month after raising about $2.5 million for his re-election bid, President Joe Biden returns to Chicago on Wednesday to raise at least another $1 million, while Vice President Kamala Harris heads to the North Shore on May 16 for a fundraising campaign.

Chicago is a deep, deep well of big Democratic campaign money.

Fundraising for Biden’s reelection effort is separate from the ongoing hunt for megadonors for the Chicago Host Committee, which aims to raise between $90 million and $100 million for the Democratic National Convention in Chicago in August.

Host committees – unlike campaigns – can take corporate donations, with the push for huge contributions from companies with strong ties to Chicago and Illinois.

The most valuable asset Biden and Harris have is their time — and they will only headline a fundraiser if it is clear the proceeds will be substantial.

Wednesday’s fundraiser will benefit the Biden Victory Fund, with a $100,000 contribution required to be a “host”; $50,000 to be a “champion”; and $25,000 to be listed as an “attorney.” By giving at all three levels, the donor gets a photo with Biden.

The Harris event is aimed at women donors in the northern suburbs.

Biden was last in Chicago on April 8 for the fundraiser that raised nearly $2.5 million, hosted by Michael Sacks and his wife, Cari, and Laura Ricketts and her wife, Brooke. Sacks is also the top leader of the Chicago Host Committee. Ricketts is part owner of the Cubs and part of the Chicago Sky ownership team. Both Sacks and Ricketts are major Democratic donors and fundraisers.

Here are the very rough and sometimes fluid guidelines when it comes to landing Biden, Harris and key surrogates:

·To get the president to attend an event, the proceeds are expected to be at least $1.5 million. For fundraisers with an excellent track record, it would in some cases be considered churlish to actually ask for explicit commitments.

· According to Harris, the financier should raise about $500,000.

· To have first lady Jill Biden at a fundraiser, organizers would need to raise about $250,000.

· To win high-profile Democratic governors, the proceeds would have to be at least $100,000.

The co-hosts of the Wednesday reception are Jane and Bob Clark; Tom Carnahan; and Susan and Bob Wislow, according to an invitation obtained by the Sun-Times.

Clark is the founder of Clayco, the construction company whose downtown headquarters was the meeting place for the new Biden-Harris Midwest Finance Committee last Wednesday. Clark, also a major backer of former President Barack Obama, was appointed by Biden as commissioner general of the Dubai Expo 2020.

The chair of the Midwest Committee in Illinois is Tamar Newberger, who along with her husband, Andy Schapiro, have been major donors and fundraisers for Biden and Obama. Obama appointed Schapiro as ambassador to the Czech Republic. Obama appointed Newberger to the United States Holocaust Memorial Council. The couple co-hosted a fundraising luncheon in Chicago for Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff.

Carnahan, a leader in the wind farm energy industry, comes from a famous Missouri political family. His late father, Mel, was governor of Missouri and his late mother, Jean, was a senator from that state. His sister, Robin, a former Missouri secretary of state, is serving in the Biden administration as administrator of the General Services Administration.

Wislow, head of Parkside Reality and a grassroots activist in Chicago, is a longtime Biden backer.

The donors at that Midwest financial gathering were Sheila Nix, Harris’ campaign chief — and a veteran of Illinois politics — and Sam Cornale, the executive director of the Democratic National Committee.

On Wednesday, Biden will leave Racine County, in the swing state of Wisconsin, just across the border with Illinois, for Chicago. The president will deliver remarks on his Investing in America agenda tomorrow morning before headlining a fundraiser. Then he goes to Chicago and ends the day at the White House.