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Biden campaign offers perks to donors

WASHINGTON — Joe Biden’s campaign finance team is offering a series of sweeteners to its most prodigious fundraisers, promising invitations to events with the president and Vice President Kamala Harris, participation in Zoom meetings with campaign staff, or other perks depending on how much money people bring in.

A breakdown of the benefits shows that the highest tier carrying the most generous benefits is that of “Biden-Harris Presidential Partner” and applies to those who raise $2.5 million by collecting checks from other donors, known as “bundling.”

These campaign supporters will be entitled to four tickets to a “special event” with Biden and Harris in Washington, D.C., in July 2024, according to a copy of the benefits sheet viewed by NBC News. The “Partners” will also be entitled to four seats at a Biden “gathering” in Chicago following his speech at the Democratic nominating convention in August 2024.

Additionally, they will be offered admission to quarterly meetings of the campaign’s national finance committee, and a luncheon with Biden-Harris campaign and Democratic National Committee leaders, among other perks, the list shows.

It is not uncommon for presidential campaigns to offer such inducements in hopes of boosting their fundraising haul. In 2012, then-President Barack Obama’s campaign created the title “Obama Victory Trustees” for those who pulled in contributions of at least $100,000. In return, these bundlers were allowed to join conference calls and attend campaign briefings.

This week, some of Biden’s fundraisers have been meeting in Chicago with the re-election campaign — one way that the Biden camp keeps its reliable donors engaged and motivated.

Biden’s finance team has also created lower tiers for those bringing in smaller total amounts. Each of these levels comes with perks, albeit not as generous.

A member of the Biden-Harris “Leadership Circle,” for example, must raise $1,250,000. Instead of getting four seats at the special event with Biden and Harris, though, these supporters will get two.

A “Biden-Harris Principal Shareholder” must raise $750,000; a “Founding Partner,” $400,000. At the lowest level, “National Finance Committee Member,” a supporter must raise $46,000 in campaign funds by the end of the year. In return, these supporters get admission to one event with Biden, one event with Harris, and weekly campaign update emails, among other benefits.

Donors received a copy of the contribution levels during a national finance committee meeting as part of this week’s huddle in Chicago. That meeting followed a Democratic National Convention preview held for state party chairs and executive directors from across the country.

Even as the Biden campaign offers inducements for those who bundle contributions, it is also rolling out new incentives and messages to entice smaller donors to give. One effort underway is the recruitment of 1,000 new fundraisers by January who will look to bring in contributions in the $250 to $1,000 range.

With no major primary competition or Democratic debates on the schedule, the Biden campaign needs to find other ways to motivate donors, one person close to the campaign said in an interview. Campaign officials and veteran fundraisers said they expect that raising money will get much easier in the new year when Republicans pick their nominee.

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