NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's uplifting perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Wednesday, September 7th, 2011

Schedule for September 25th presidential visit to Seattle starts to take shape

Although the White House has yet to offi­cial­ly con­firm that Pres­i­dent Oba­ma is com­ing to Seat­tle in two and a half weeks, we already have a pret­ty good idea of what his sched­ule will be like while he’s here.

That’s because his cam­paign has been busy try­ing to inter­est local Democ­rats with at least $1,000 to spare to attend one of two pricey fundrais­ing events.

One will be a brunch in the afflu­ent sub­urb of Med­i­na, home to Microsoft cofounder Bill Gates and his wife Melin­da. Jon Shirley, who served with Gates at Microsoft, will be the host of the event, which costs $35,800 per couple.

An invi­ta­tion obtained by the Seat­tle P‑I’s Joel Con­nel­ly tout­ed the brunch as a chance for wealthy cou­ples to enjoy an inti­mate meal with the president:

For­mat: Max­i­mum of 50 cou­ples — and the for­mat is going to be amaz­ing: infor­mal remarks and then Q & A from the audi­ence! He’s then do a pho­to line or can­did pho­tos (going around to all the tables). They’re still decid­ing the latter.

The oth­er event that Oba­ma is doing is an 11:30 AM lunch at the Para­mount The­ater in Seat­tle, catered by renowned local chef Tom Dou­glas. A plate at that lunch can be had for a min­i­mum con­tri­bu­tion of $1,000. “VIP seat­ing” costs anoth­er $1,500 (for a total of $2,500) and get­ting into the pho­to line costs $7,500.

Oba­ma will like­ly also do a third event — a so-called pub­lic event — to jus­ti­fy billing the peo­ple of the Unit­ed States for his jour­ney to Seat­tle, which will actu­al­ly just be one stop on a longer West Coast fundrais­ing jaunt.

(The term “pub­lic event” is some­what of a mis­nomer since it prob­a­bly won’t be open to the pub­lic. “Offi­cial event” would be more accurate).

This trip will be Oba­ma’s third vis­it to the Ever­green State since becom­ing pres­i­dent; he was in Seat­tle twice last year on behalf of Sen­a­tor Pat­ty Mur­ray. It would be nice if the pres­i­dent was com­ing here to do more than just make an ATM with­draw­al, but unfor­tu­nate­ly, no time has been left for any­thing else.

Oba­ma will at least hold a token offi­cial event and allow a pool reporter to observe the fundrais­ing events, which is more than his pre­de­ces­sor George W. Bush did. Bush’s vis­its real­ly were about Repub­li­can fundrais­ers and absolute­ly noth­ing else.

To us, Oba­ma’s vis­it is just anoth­er reminder that the Belt­way has changed him more than he has changed it.

If we ever want our pol­i­tics to revolve around some­thing oth­er than mon­ey, we’re going to have to orga­nize to over­turn some very mis­guid­ed Supreme Court deci­sions which posit that cor­po­ra­tions are peo­ple and mon­ey is speech.

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  1. Keep up the good work, you have a nice blog here with a lot of good infor­ma­tion! Not many sites present use­ful and rel­e­vant info like yours. When you post some new stuff, I’ll vis­it your blog again. I’ve already sub­scribed to the RSS feed. 

    Is the pres­i­dent going to do a pub­lic event?

    # by Toelke :: September 21st, 2011 at 4:49 AM
    • No, it does­n’t look like it. He will only be doing two cam­paign events.

      # by Andrew :: September 22nd, 2011 at 12:46 PM
  2. This is one of the best weblogs I have ever seen and read. Thanks for shar­ing this use­ful infor­ma­tion. I will come back in a few days to see your report on Pres­i­dent Oba­ma’s visit.

    # by Lanna :: September 21st, 2011 at 8:03 AM
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