Inside the fundraisers Silicon Valley's elite billionaire families hosted for Pete Buttigieg, where guests paid R40,000 to dine under a chandelier covered in 1,500 Swarovski crystals
- Netflix CEO Reed Hastings and the family members of fellow Silicon Valley billionaires Sergey Brin, Sheryl Sandberg, and Eric Schmidt hosted a glitzy fundraiser for South Bend, Indiana, Mayor Pete Buttigieg's presidential campaign in Palo Alto on Monday, Recode's Teddy Schleifer reported.
- Photos of an earlier Napa Valley event show Buttigieg speaking with guests under a chandelier that contains 1,500 Swarovski crystals.
- Buttigieg already received donations from 39 billionaires in the first 11 months of 2019.
- Senators Bernie Sandars and Elizabeth Warren have turned taking campaign donations from the ultra-wealthy into a taboo in the Democratic presidential primary.
- For more stories go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za.
Pete Buttigieg spent his weekend schmoozing Silicon Valley billionaires.
At Palo Alto fundraiser on Monday, cohosts included Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, Google cofounder Sergey Brin's wife Nicole Shanahan, former Google CEO Eric Schmidt's wife Wendy Schmidt, and Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg's sister Michelle Sandberg, a campaign document obtained by Recode's Teddy Schleifer shows. These hosts alone have a combined net worth of $80 billion (R1.1 trillion), according to Recode.
A group of 150 to 200 supporters met at Napa Valley's Hall Rutherford winery on Sunday evening, according to a Pete for America pool report provided to Business Insider. Guests dined at a table made of onyx, under a chandelier that contains 1,500 Swarovski crystals, photos of the event shared by Schleifer show and Brian Slodysko of the Associated Press previously reported. Guests had to make a donation of up to $2,800 (R40,000) to Buttigieg's campaign in order to attend, according to Recode.
For $1,000 (R14,000), guests got to take a photo with Buttigieg. For $2,800 (R40,000), they could be listed as co-hosts, according to the pool report. Former US ambassador to Austria and Hall Rutherford owner Kathryn Hall was the event's host.
Buttigieg told attendees that the event - along with meeting Lizzo earlier in the week - was a highlight of his trip to San Francisco, according to the pool report
Schleifer shared photos of the Napa Valley event on Twitter. The photos were originally shared on Instagram, but appear to have since been removed.
Buttigieg isn't the only Democratic contender courting billionaires
California senator Kamala Harris has received donations from 46 billionaires since January 1, including oil heirs Gordon and Ann Getty, filmmaker George Lucas, investor Dean Metropoulos, and philanthropist Laurene Powell Jobs before dropping out of the race on December 3, Business Insider previously reported.
New Jersey senator Cory Booker is neck and neck with Harris when it comes to billionaire support, with donations from 45 billionaires, according to a November report from Forbes. Booker's ultra-wealthy donors include hedge-fund manager William Ackman, producer Andres Santo Domingo, Google chairman (and Booker's former business partner) Eric Schmidt, and filmmaker Steven Spielberg, Forbes reported.
Former Vice President Joe Biden is third-most popular when it comes to financial backing from billionaires: He has accepted donations from 44 billionaires. Buttigieg has the support of 39, according to Forbes.
Senators Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren have turned taking campaign donations from the ultra-wealthy into a taboo in the Democratic presidential primary. Sanders vowed not to accept funds from any billionaires, and even returned a $470 (R6,700) donation from a billionaire's wife in November, Forbes reported.
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