Despite Hillary Clinton’s convention outreach to Sen. Bernie Sanders’s supporters over campaign finance reform — “Your cause is our cause,” she said — Apple CEO Tim Cook is hosting a fundraiser for Clinton at up to $50,000 a ticket.
Sanders’s man-of-the-people campaign raised $228,556,686 from over 7 million individual donors, contributing an average of just $27. Small individual contributors that gave less than $200 accounted for about 60 percent of Sanders’s donations.
Hillary Clinton told Sanders supporters that as a woman of the people, “Our country needs your ideas, energy and passion.” But according to the non-partisan OpenSecrets blog, Clinton hasn’t been wasting much time focusing on $27 contributors.
Of the $264,374,319 Hillary raised directly from small individual donors during the primary season, only $50,842,138, or 19 percent, came from small individual donors under $200. Clinton, unlike Sanders, also benefited from fatcat political action committees (PACs) that raised another $110,211,121 to show her love. Adding the two funding bases together, less than 14 percent of Hillary’s donors gave small bucks.
Silicon Valley earned the nickname “Valley of the Democrats” from the TechCrunch blog, because over 83 percent of presidential campaign contributions went to Democrats during the 2008 and 2012 campaigns.
Silicon Valley continues to be the “Valley of the Democrats” in the 2016 presidential campaigns, with over 99 percent of Silicon Valley’s $8.6 million in contributions going to Democrats. But Hillary Clinton’s average Silicon Valley contribution was $1,276, compared to just $178 for Sanders.
The size of Hillary Clinton’s average Silicon Valley donation is about to spike much higher on August 24, when Cook hosts a fundraiser for the first woman in American history to lead a presidential ticket of a major party.
Cook is officially raising money for the Hillary Victory Fund PAC, according to an invitation obtained by BuzzFeed News. The HVF PAC is a joint fundraising committee that will contribute Clinton campaign, the Democratic National Committee, and 38 state parties. The HVF PAC is keeping the event location secret until payments are received.
In keeping with Clinton’s focus on big-hitter contributors, Cook’s fundraiser lists three different contribution levels: $50,000, $10,000, and $2,700.
The secrecy surrounding Cook’s efforts on behalf of the Hillary Victory Fund PAC event may be tied to the WikiLeaks July 22 release of 19,252 Democratic National Committee emails and the July 27 release of 29 DNC audio recordings that appear to raise questions about whether the Clinton presidential campaign potentially “laundered” money through the Clinton Victory Fund PAC, according to lawyers representing a class action of Sanders contributors against the DNC and its former chair, Debbie Wasserman Shultz.
Apple, Inc. and the Clinton campaign declined comment to BuzzFeed.
Recently, Cook held a fundraiser for Speaker of the House Paul Ryan — an act for which he was slammed by prominent Democrats, including House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.