Home Business Biden inaugural committee unveils fundraising packages offering access for big donations

Biden inaugural committee unveils fundraising packages offering access for big donations

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President-elect Joe Biden takes off his protective face mask to deliver a televised address to the nation, after the U.S. Electoral College formally confirmed his victory over President Donald Trump in the 2020 U.S. presidential election, from Biden’s transition headquarters in Wilmington, Delaware, U.S., December 14, 2020.

Mike Segar | Reuters

President-elect Joe Biden’s inaugural committee sent out their fundraising packages to donors, offering some form of access of what will likely be a largely virtual event.

The inaugural committee are offering four different packages to donors depending on how much they give, according to a list of fundraising options provided to CNBC.

If an organization gives $1 million, it will be named a chair of the inaugural. An individual will get the same rank with a $500,000 donation. Biden’s inaugural committee is allowing corporations to contribute, with the exception of fossil fuel companies.

Such a donation would result in an invitation to a virtual event with Biden and his wife, Jill Biden, a “preferred viewing for virtual Inauguration,” a “VIP participation in virtual concert during Inauguration Week,” VIP tickets to a future in-person event and virtual briefings with the inaugural co-chairs and other senior leaders, according to the fundraising packages.

There will also be select sponsorship opportunities for these donors.

Organizations that give $500,000, or individuals who give $250,000, will be designated as vice chairs. These donors will receive an “invitation to virtual event with the Vice President-elect [Kamala Harris] & Second Gentleman-elect,” a “VIP participation in virtual concert during Inauguration Week and invitation to virtual Inauguration,” and two tickets to a future in-person event.

Bank of America recently told CNBC that it is looking to support the Biden inaugural, after being big donors to President Donald Trump’s committee in 2017.

“We have supported inauguration events over many administrations on a non-partisan basis because we view it as part of our civic commitment for an important national event,” Bill Halldin, a spokesman for the bank, told CNBC on Monday. “The private sector has traditionally done so and we expect to provide support for ceremonies in January as appropriate, given the health crisis and other factors that may impact it.”

The bank gave $1 million to Trump’s inaugural, according to data compiled by the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics. Halldin did not say how much the company may give the Biden inaugural committee.

Coca-Cola, who gave just over $335,000 to the Trump inaugural, had not made a decision as of Monday on whether they would contribute to the event.

“As you know this is a very different year and as such we have not yet made a decision regarding a financial contribution to the inauguration,” Coca-Cola spokeswoman Ann Moore told CNBC yesterday.

Trump’s inaugural four years ago raised a record amount of over $100 million. That total was almost double the amount brought in by President Barack Obama’s first inaugural committee.

The release of the Biden fundraising proposals comes as the inaugural is on course to be mostly a virtual celebration in January due to the coronavirus pandemic. The Democratic National Convention in August was also virtual.

“I am pushing for something similar to what we did for our convention,” Rep. James Clyburn, D-S.C., the lead chair of the committee, told CNBC in an interview earlier this month.

Biden’s inaugural committee urged Americans on Tuesday to stay home and watch the inaugural ceremonies on TV this year because of the spreading coronavirus.

Biden and Harris will take their oaths of office from on Capitol Hill next month but the press release noted that the “ceremony’s footprint will be extremely limited, and the parade that follows will be reimagined.”

“Our goal is to create an inauguration that keeps people safe, honors the grand traditions of the Presidency, and showcases the Biden-Harris Administration’s renewed American vision for an inclusive, equitable, and unified citizenry,” committee CEO Tony Allen said Tuesday.

The committee also announced that former Obama campaign aide Stephanie Cutter and Emmy Award-winning TV producer Ricky Kirshner have joined the inaugural committee staff as executive producers. Also joining the team as a senior advisor is Rod O’Connor, who led the effort to create and produce the virtual Democratic National Convention last summer.