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A Morning at the Dakota

By Matthew Mosk
Democrats Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama will file campaign finance reports tomorrow that will show in stark terms the power of Internet fundraising -- as evidenced by Obama's massive January haul that included $28 million from online donors.

But before anyone declares fundraising from wealthy patrons to be outmoded, they should spend Wednesday morning at the Dakota, the gabled Central Park West high-rise made famous as the scene of John Lennon's assassination in 1980.

Clinton will hold back-to-back fundraisers in the iconic building, the first of which will be hosted by a power quartet of the New York entertainment and philanthropic scenes. The hostesses are Jessica Seinfeld, wife of New York television comedy icon Jerry Seinfeld; "Saturday Night Live" producer Marci Klein, daughter of Calvin Klein; philanthropist Brooke Neidich; and the hostess, Jane Rosenthal. Rosenthal is a film producer with numerous hit movies under her belt, many of them involving business partner Robert De Niro (an Obama supporter). One of their joint projects was the film "Wag the Dog," the 1997 hit about a president who tries to distract the public from a sex scandal by hiring a Hollywood producer to stage a fake war in Albania.

The second event, 90 minutes later, will be hosted by New York power couple Ruth Porat and Anthony Paduano. Porat made her name as a top executive at Morgan Stanley, while Paduano is a lawyer. Paduano was supporting Mitt Romney, but he said he has recently maxed out to Clinton. Porat has also given $4,600 to Clinton's campaign.

the maximum allowed.
The Clinton campaign has not provided predictions for how much the tandem morning events will raise. But her fundraisers have predicted that these events, along with a steady diet of fundraisers -- and $15 million raised online so far -- should make February the campaign's most productive month.

By Web Politics Editor  |  February 19, 2008; 6:40 PM ET
Categories:  Hillary Rodham Clinton  
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I wouldn't call "Wag the Dog" a hit (and I saw it in the theaters. It cost $15MM (according to and grossed $43MM (which means it made roughly $7MM, since 50% of the receipts go to the exhibitor). It opened in second in B.O receipts behind "Good Will Hunting" (if you have heard of any of the other eight, you;re a bigger movie nerd than me). GWH grossed over $138MM on a $10MM budget; GWH was a hit, WTD merely made money.

Posted by: gbooksdc | February 19, 2008 11:03 PM | Report abuse

Americans are declaring their independence from politics-as-usual. They have packed their wagons and are heading west to the land of hope. Or they can stay home and take prozac......

Posted by: glclark4750 | February 19, 2008 9:16 PM | Report abuse

Are all her donors women now?

I can understand Jane Rosenthal supporting her out of guilt of course. I remember "Wag the Dog" - with its Monica look-alike, supposedly cast before anyone knew about her.

Posted by: TomJx | February 19, 2008 8:35 PM | Report abuse

I wonder if Sen Obama holds comparable events and who attends them. I look forward to Mr Mosk's similarly detailed report on the matter.

Posted by: zukermand | February 19, 2008 8:29 PM | Report abuse

Gee, Hillary, this approach to fundraising sure doesn't sound much to me like you're the "candidate of, from and for the middle class." But I guess you blew that imagery back when you loaned your campaign a cool $5mil out of your "own money."

Yeah, that's what I call the "middle class" alright. ~grimace~

Posted by: drama_king | February 19, 2008 8:14 PM | Report abuse

If Hillary's butt gets any redder, she'll soon be leading the sleigh and Rudolph will be out of a job.

Posted by: gmundenat | February 19, 2008 7:51 PM | Report abuse

campaigndiaries, Thanx.

Posted by: mark_in_austin | February 19, 2008 7:25 PM | Report abuse

The second wave of exit polls (caution, there is still a lot of voting) looks like a big Obama win:

Posted by: campaigndiaries | February 19, 2008 6:49 PM | Report abuse

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