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Bill Clinton And Barack Obama Join Joe Biden For Blockbuster Radio City Fundraiser

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Joe Biden was joined by his predecessors Barack Obama and Bill Clinton today for a taping of the Smartless podcast, a prelude to a large-scale showbiz filled fundraiser this evening at Radio City Music Hall.

The fundraising event raised more than $25 million, making it the largest haul for a single political event, according to Biden’s re-election campaign. The campaign was quick to compare the money raised to that of Donald Trump, who has lagged his rival in fundraising. The sum is larger than the entire amount that Trump’s campaign raised in February.

The appearance of Biden, Obama and Clinton also was designed as a show of unity to Trump, who has been shunned by high profile traditional Republicans like former Vice President Dick Cheney and his daughter, Liz Cheney. The only living Republican ex-president, George W. Bush, has not said whether he will endorse Trump, but he did not campaign with the former Celebrity Apprentice host in 2016 or 2020.

Pro-Palestinian protesters gather outside Radio City Music Hall.

LEONARDO MUNOZ/AFP via Getty Images

Outside of Radio City, though, was a reminder for Biden of the fissures in the party over the Israel-Gaza war, as a large number of demonstrators nearby the venue. The appearance of protesters at any Biden event has become a common scene, with hecklers interrupting his speech in Raleigh earlier this week.

At the event, Stephen Colbert will moderate a discussion with the three presidents. First Lady Jill Biden also will deliver remarks, and there will be performances by Lizzo, Cynthia Erivo, Ben Platt, Queen Latifah and Lea Michelle. Mindy Kaling will emcee.

About 5,000 people are expected at the sold out event, with ticket prices reportedly ranging from $225 per person to $500,000 at the top level, in addition to a heavily promoted online contest to win tickets to attend. The latter includes access to exclusive events and a photo with the three presidents. The campaign said that Annie Leibovitz would be taking photos with some of the attendees.

Donald Trump’s campaign spent much of the day pointing out that he was also in New York, but attending the wake of NYPD officer Jonathan Diller, who was shot and killed during a traffic stop. Fox News gave the campaign an assist with a chyron of Trump’s visit, reading, “Trump attends cop wake, Biden goes to fundraiser.”



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