August 25 — Early Leader in Fundraiser Derby, By a Head

While the Legislature doesn’t return until August 17 — and things can change dramatically before then — it appears that August 25 holds the early lead for day with the most scheduled fundraisers during the final four weeks lawmakers will be in Sacramento this year.

There are 16.

August 26 is a close second at 15, however.

Holding fundraising events during the final month of the annual legislative session is a time-honored Capitol tradition. Lawmakers say it’s both convenient and necessary since, in odd-numbered years, after mid-September it’s more difficult logistically to get checks from the interest groups who have business in the Capitol.

Those interest groups often privately grumble that the fundraisers are scheduled at a time when hundreds of bills, many of which are important to them, are being considered by the same lawmakers seeking political contributions.

Even-numbered years, being election years, are always more frenzied during the final month of session but the last month of 2009 shapes up well.

It’s a slow start. First day back, no fundraisers are yet scheduled. (Editors Note: Attention professional fundraising folk – void to be filled.) There’s only one event on August 18th but a solid up tick to six on August 19.

The following week the quest for checks heats up. Five fundraisers on August 24. Triple that on the 26th and, as noted, 16 on the 25th. There are even four events on Thursday August 27, usually a day of rest since lawmakers return to their home districts.

The first week in September is also respectable. Seven events on September 1, four more than that on Tuesday September 2 and four on September 3.

There are no fundraisers scheduled for the final week of session, which begins September 8.

(Editor’s Note: Again, perhaps a void in need of filling. Future California’s Capitol posts will offer comparative data as a service to help lobbyists more strategically determine which events to attend or contribute to. A sample invitation, selected at random, of the last month’s, so far, scheduled events follows.)


Please Join Us For A

Cocktail Reception Honoring 

Senator Dean Florez 

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

5:30 – 7:00 p.m.


Ella’s Dining Room & Bar

 1131 K Street 

Sacramento, CA 

$6,500.00 – Sponsor  $3,000.00 – Host $1,000.00 – Ticket   

RSVP to (916) 551-1430 or rsvp@bertolina.com 

Fax this form back to (916) 552-1850

Please make checks payable to: Dean Florez for Lieutenant Governor, ID # 1299732 c/o Bertolina & Barnato, Inc. 1005 12th Street, Suite H, Sacramento, CA 95814

 ____ I/we will attend Senator Florez’s event and be a Sponsor at $6,500.

____ I/we will attend Senator Florez’s event and be a Host at $3,000.

____ I/we will attend Senator Florez’s event and purchase ___ ticket(s) at $1,000.

____ Sorry, I/we will not be able to attend, but please accept a contribution of_______.

Contributions to this committee are not deductible for federal income tax purposes. The California Political Reform Act (Prop. 34) places limits on contributions (including loans) to candidates for state office, and imposes certain prohibitions.  This request does not seek a contribution in excess of applicable limits or from prohibited sources.  An individual, union, political action committee, association, committee, partnership, business or corporation may contribute a maximum of $6,500 to the committee per election.  A registered Small Contributor Committee may contribute a maximum of $12,900 to the committee per election.



Filed under: Fundraising


  1. I’m on it. The drywall installers have a big agenda to run in the last month and we’ll need everyone of these legislators. Is this a great country or what?

    Comment by Gus Turdlock — 8.05.2009 @ 5:41 pm

  2. Do you think we could get sponsorship logo’s on the clothes the legislators wear so if we miss the event we will know who attended and who is sponsoring whom. Nascar is a good example the legislators could follow giving top billing like back and chest to the biggest donation.

    Comment by Management Slug — 8.06.2009 @ 8:38 am

  3. There is something so fundamentally WRONG with the constant lauding of fundraisers and how much money everyone has raised to date. It is such a common part of the political landscape that no one even seems to question the system anymore. Campaign finance reform is a silly joke at this juncture. Does anyone ever stop and think about what a difference it would make if corporate and private big bucks were disallowed from political campaigns? That the impact on fairness and decency in politics would be impressive if the special interests on both sides would be forced to cease and desist. (Any don’t anyone regurgitate the Supreme Court opinion that this is a matter of freedom of speech — HOGWASH! Should we then understand that Goldman Sachs is entitled to more freedom of speech that is Kathy Moore or Steve Macky?) Does anyone ever think about the fact that each and every problem we have with government and corporate influence in that government would be eliminated if this money were no longer a part of the equation. Clearly everyone grabs as much as they can – they must in order to be competitive. Unfortunately, the public good is a bloodied victim of the practice.

    Comment by Sandy Carey — 8.06.2009 @ 12:37 pm

  4. Love the NASCAR proposal. Don’t think, however, there would be enough room on their suits, dresses and shoes to give due credit to all contributors.

    Comment by Robyn Boyer — 8.06.2009 @ 3:18 pm

  5. I say shut it down. Drastically curtail fundraising during the legislative session when the people\’s business is being done. Too many legislators are walking around with their hands out but trying to look like the tough guy with special interests.

    AT&T, SEIU and the CTA are the real culprits here. The sums of money they dole out are just too large and invite unchecked favoritism. Virtually every legislator and ethnic caucus will hold an event in the August/September timeframe while they still hold lobbyists memorized by their red or green button. I say, just say no.

    BTW, I have an amazing event coming up in October.

    Comment by J. Brown — 8.06.2009 @ 7:25 pm

  6. J. Brown — do you actually believe that it matters WHEN a politician holds a fundraiser or WHEN he/she accepts a political contribution? Come on! And, the culprits are not so easily classified as you have suggested. They are from all corners and of every stripe. \"Unchecked favoritism\" is certainly not confined to the SEIU and the CTA — ever checked the corporate contributions and lobbyist influence and linked that money/influence with bad legislation? Duh!

    Comment by Sandy Carey — 8.07.2009 @ 7:40 am

  7. Fundraising??? For this collective bunch of boobs who can’t do their job thus stiffiling our State and the jobs of their voters.

    Off with their heads I say and let’s fundraise for worthy candidates who will vote the will of their constituents and stop all of this nonsense of a “giveaway state.”

    Its bad enough that we have a federal government that has now indebted each American citizen with with over a quarter of a million dollars in debt that is not going away. That’s right, YOU are on the hook for 253,000 for federal debt right now.

    Let’s take back control of our State, our country and our lives.

    Comment by Dagnabit — 8.10.2009 @ 7:34 am

  8. Why not fundraise for the budget instead? There are plenty of rich people in this state (including the gov and legislators) and they could contribute a LOT of money towards a budget AND a surplus. But, oh no, they couldn’t possibly contribute fundraising money to the budget – they have to bleed the people for that and take the fundraised money for themselves…

    Comment by Disgusted — 8.10.2009 @ 8:56 am

  9. The boobs are people who create problems and do nothing but complain. How many of the 700 intiatives have the people commenting here voted for? California demands flash over substance and then Californians complain about the amount of money it takes to communicate to BOOBS who don’t pay attention unless you run 75 15 second adds an hour for two months before an election. How many people actually research the candidates who don’t raise so much money? Yeah, that’d work… Got a problem with SOMEBODY ELSE’S legislator? TERM LIMITS!!! Property Taxes too high? PROP 13 followed by 75 initiatives with new rules avoiding the fact that you screwed local governments by removing their only income. Now they rely on the State? Ah, those bum legislators are at fault. LOOK IN THE MIRROR.

    Comment by I Miss Johnny B — 8.10.2009 @ 10:27 am

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