Mitt Romney is heading to Jackson Hole, Wyo., today for another high-dollar fundraiser. But this isn’t just with Wall Street executives or those vying to be his running mate.
Instead it is to be hosted by former Vice President Dick Cheney and those coughing up $30,000 each — or $60,000 for a couple — get to dine with Cheney and his wife, Lynn, at their Jackson Hole residence, according to the invitation.
The event is also hosted by Cheney friends Dick and Maggie Scarlett and Allan and Frances Tessler. Dick Scarlett is chairman and CEO of United Bancorporation of Wyoming. Allan Tessler is the former CEO of Data Broadcasting Corporation as well as a venture capitalist. (He also wrote a letter in 2007 to Judge Reggie B. Walton on behalf of Scooter Libby, pleading for a shorter sentence, according to the letter on the Washington Post website.) Cheney’s daughter Liz will also attend.
Sources familiar with the planning of the event said they originally expected 50 couples, but now have about 230 couples attending. Although the fundraiser is completely different from Romney’s Utah confab earlier this month, this event is also attracting donors from all over the country who want to make a trip out of it. The Grand Teton Music Festival, a classical music festival, is also going on in Jackson Hole.
Like most Romney and Republican National Committee joint fundraisers, there are different levels for donors and therefore access to the presumptive GOP nominee, as well as Cheney. The main event is at the beautiful Teton Pines Country Club, with its sweeping mountain views. The minimum donation for the general reception is $2,500 per person. For those who donate $50,000 or $100,000 per couple, they will not only get to have dinner with Cheney and Romney but are also invited to the host committee reception and will become a Founding Member of Romney Victory. For $5,000 each, an attendee is invited to a photo reception with the two.
Romney has not appeared in public with Cheney during the campaign nor with President George W. Bush. He did meet with President H.W. Bush and Barbara Bush in Houston in March and Mrs. Bush even recorded robo-calls for Romney during the primary.
Another notable attendee is Lynn Friess, wife of former mutual fund manager Foster Friess, who bankrolled Rick Santorum’s superPAC during the primary, The Red, White, and Blue Fund. Despite being a Jackson Hole resident, the Friesses are not hosting the event and Foster cannot attend because he’s traveling to the East Coast, according to his spokesperson Matthew Taylor.
This should not be interpreted as not supporting the presumptive GOP nominee, though. Taylor said the Friesses have maxed out the federal election contribution amount to the joint Romney-RNC Victory Fund, $75,000 each. That’s not all: Taylor also told ABC News Friess made a six-figure contribution to the pro-Romney superPAC Restore our Future last month. Taylor would not narrow down the amount from six figures. The Federal Election Committee filing will reveal the full amount later this month.
The Romney campaign beat the Obama campaign in fundraising for the second month in a row last month, besting them by $35 million. Romney raised $106 million in June to Obama’s $71 million.