Joe Biden’s top staffers have been courting lobbyists to donate money to the Democratic National Committee — despite his campaign’s assurance that they will not accept donations from K Street, a report said Thursday.
Just this month, the Biden campaign has sent staffers — including Biden campaign Chairman Steve Ricchetti — to participate in at least four Zoom fundraisers that were hosted by noted Democratic lobbyists and benefitted the DNC, Politico reported.
Ricchetti appeared at three of the four fundraisers this month and headlined one with Bruce Reed, a former chief of staff to Biden when he was vice president, according to the report.
Because Biden’s campaign won’t accept money from lobbyists, K Street staffers say donating to the DNC is the next best way to get their checks close to party leaders.
“We’ll do whatever we can to beat Donald Trump,” Al Mottur, a veteran DC lobbyist told Politico.
“This is what we’re able to do,” he added.
The special interest fundraisers are a stark contrast to the Democratic Party under Barack Obama, who barred lobbyists from donating to the DNC when he was elected president in 2008.
The moratorium was lifted in 2016 — and ahead of the election in November, the DNC has stepped up its fundraising on K Street, Politico reported, citing three unnamed lobbyists.
Jonathan Mantz, one of the lobbyists who set up the event hosted by Ricchetti and Reed told the outlet that they’d increased the financial goal of the fundraiser because of “strong demand” to participate.
Mantz said to expect more events like it in the lead up to the election.
“I’m pretty confident we will be doing more events like this one over the next couple months to accommodate those who couldn’t attend this event,” he told the news outlet.