Saturday, August 16, 2008

Democrats Resort to “Soft Money” to Fund Denver Extravaganza

Well, maybe they’ve gone overboard a little with the fancy menus, renting that football stadium for the coronation, etc., but now Dems are faced with a large budget deficit in meeting expenses for their national convention estimated at $60 million. And although Obama, the self-appointed titular head of the party, has ostensibly opposed soft money in favor of small donations, it looks as if that’s where the party is headed in funding the extravaganza, which the Denver Host Committee has been busily putting in place the past several weeks.

The LA Times reports:

“Facing a large deficit in the Democratic National Convention budget, officials from Barack Obama's campaign have begun personally soliciting labor unions and others for contributions of up to $1 million. In exchange, donors could get stadium skyboxes for Obama's acceptance speech and other perks.

“Obama has regularly criticized politicians seeking large donations outside the framework of campaign finance regulations -- so-called soft money -- while touting the virtues of relying on small donations.

“But campaign officials last month reluctantly decided they had to take a hand in raising large donations from individuals, unions and corporations. Some of the donors get special bundles of perks, including use of the party suites at Denver's Invesco Field, as well as special policy briefings by Obama advisors, choice hotel rooms and party invitations.”

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