Biden Team Set to Raise Record $28 Million at Hollywood Fund-Raiser

Biden Team Set to Raise Record $28 Million at Hollywood Fund-Raiser


President Biden’s campaign expects to collect more than $28 million at a gala Los Angeles fund-raiser packed with celebrities on Saturday night in a Hollywood show of force.

Mr. Biden left a meeting of world leaders in Italy on Friday to fly to Los Angeles for the dinner, which will feature former President Barack Obama, the actors George Clooney and Julia Roberts and the late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel. Air Force One was expected to land in Washington only long enough to refuel for the continuing flight.

The travel across 10 time zones illustrated the competing presidential and political demands on Mr. Biden’s time as the campaign against former President Donald J. Trump accelerates. Aides said the taxing schedule made clear that even at age 81, he still demonstrates the endurance to manage his many duties.

The $28 million haul anticipated from Saturday’s event was set to break a party record, overtaking the $26 million Democrats brought in from a fund-raiser in March in New York featuring Mr. Biden along with Mr. Obama and former President Bill Clinton.

While Mr. Biden and the Democrats have outpaced Mr. Trump’s team in donations for much of the campaign, Republicans pulled in $50.5 million at an event in Palm Beach, Fla., in April, and said they raised a total of $141 million in May, matching what Mr. Biden and Democrats raised in March and April combined.

Tickets for the Democratic event at the Peacock Theater run from $250 for grass-roots supporters to $500,000 for a four-seat package. The film and television industry has long been a financial bulwark for the Democrats, but organizers hoped to use Saturday’s fund-raiser to bolster Mr. Biden’s coffers and demonstrate his strong support among some of the nation’s most recognized figures.

“This Saturday we are going to see an unprecedented and record-setting turn out from the media and entertainment world,” Jeffrey Katzenberg, the longtime Hollywood mogul now serving as co-chairman of the Biden campaign, said in a statement. “The enthusiasm and commitment for Biden-Harris couldn’t be stronger. We all understand this is the most important election of our lifetime.”

Mr. Clooney and Ms. Roberts are among the biggest draws. But questions around Mr. Clooney’s support arose after a Washington Post report this month that the actor had contacted a senior White House official to lodge a complaint related to the war in Gaza.

Mr. Clooney’s complaint focused on the president’s criticism last month of the International Criminal Court’s decision to seek a warrant against top Israeli officials over the war. Amal Clooney, a human rights lawyer and the actor’s wife, worked on the case. In the days since the dispute became public, Mr. Clooney has issued multiple fund-raising appeals through the Biden campaign, an apparent effort to show that his support for the president remains strong.

Mr. Kimmel will interview Mr. Biden and Mr. Obama during the event, focusing particularly on health care. After his newborn son required open-heart surgery in 2017, Mr. Kimmel became outspoken about the importance of the Affordable Care Act passed when Mr. Obama was president and Mr. Biden was vice president.

Other celebrities expected on Saturday night include Jason Bateman, Jack Black, Kathryn Hahn and Sheryl Lee Ralph.



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