President Obama Will “Do Lunch” for Campaign Cash
In return for a $5 donation to his reelection campaign, President Barack Obama is offering supporters a chance to participate in a raffle to win a “casual” dinner with him at an unstated location.
In an e-mail to supporters, the president's campaign will raffle off four tickets for the casual dinner. Describing the event as a “casual meal among friends,” the e-mail says it will be a chance for the President and four lucky supporters to share stories and ideas about national policy.
Winners will get free airfare and hotel accommodations, and the e-mail adds “all you need to bring is your story and your ideas about how we can continue to make this a better country for all Americans."
The e-mail makes a point of saying the campaign does not take contributions from lobbyists or special-interests, but most campaigns invite high-powered guests to its fundraising dinners.
It fails to note, however, that President Obama himself has conducted several high-dollar fundraisers in the weeks since he announced his reelection effort.
Raffles are illegal if they require participants to buy anything. In this raffle, everyone who makes a $5 dollar donation is automatically entered and eligible to win the dinner with Obama.
To keep it legal, people can enter the raffle without donating, but instructions for doing that are buried far down in the fine print.