The Trail: A Daily Diary of Campaign 2008


The Green Zone

Obama Campaign Plans Fundraisers in China

By Matthew Mosk
Sens. Barack Obama and John McCain are in the midst of a fundraising binge, and it appears there is nowhere the two White House hopefuls won't go in search of dough.

Next week, the Obama campaign will hold two fundraising events in China.

The candidate himself won't be making an appearance. Instead, guests at the Bejing home of David Brooks, a Coca Cola executive there, will hear from two senior foreign policy fellows from the Brookings Institution who advise the Obama campaign, Ivo Daalder and Phil Gordon. If the June 17 appearance does not satisfy, American expatriates in China can hear the two foreign policy experts opine at an event on June 19 in Shanghai hosted by Ted Hornbein, an executive a Richco, a company that manufactures electronic components for cell phones and the like.

No rules prohibit fundraising abroad, so long as the donors are American citizens. And a number of the 2008 presidential contenders engaged in overseas fundraising during the past 16 months. McCain, for instance, held a March 20 luncheon at Spencer House -- the neo-classical home built for an ancestor of Diana, the late Princess of Wales -- "by kind permission of Lord Rothschild OM GBE and the Hon. Nathaniel Rothschild."

But Obama appears to have collected the most funds from overseas, at least $1.6 million, according to Federal Election Commission records. (McCain raised $196,000 from donors living abroad, the records show.) While McCain's contributions are centered largely in London, with a handful from Bermuda, the Obama funds have come from addresses as eclectic as Kabul, Dubai, Palermo, and Sydney.

Posted at 3:14 PM ET on Jun 10, 2008  | Category:  The Green Zone
Share This: Technorati talk bubble Technorati | Tag in | Digg This
Previous: Obama Distances Himself from VP Vetters | Next: Strickland Takes Himself Out of the Vice Presidential Running

Add 44 to Your Site
Be the first to know when there's a new installment of The Trail. This widget is easy to add to your Web site, and it will update every time there's a new entry on The Trail.
Get This Widget >>


Please email us to report offensive comments.

"Obama funds have come from addresses as eclectic as Kabul, Dubai,.."

Hay, he gets money from AlQadah if he can, or perhaps he does!!!

Posted by: nancy sabet | June 24, 2008 3:49 PM

Isn't it amazing how an article stating such simple facts elicits such a diverse opinion of what those facts are. How does Expatriates equal Chinese, communists, etc. It would seem that many of the "Hillary" supporter are just spitting venom out at ANYTHING Obama...sour grapes. I think that donations are primarily money and not votes; there are other venues that hold more voting power closer to home. And to the whiner who thinks the McCain campaign has already achieved victory...where is YOUR info coming from...the Savage nation?

Posted by: stephanie | June 12, 2008 5:20 PM

Can anyone tell me how the contributions are verified? Does anyone check any of the information on online donations? Isn't the bundling process subject to abuse? I was told by the campaign that they don't verify anything and it is the responsibility of the contributor to responsibly donate. Please help me understand who is checking all these contributors. Thnks.

Posted by: helene rosenberg | June 12, 2008 1:35 PM

I lived abroad in 1992 and just wish I had been as able to participate in the politics of my native land as people can today. I was told by a business acquaintance that the new president was named Clinton and I asked who in the world he was.

You see, I had been teaching Western business practices deep in the former Soviet Union, in Kazakhstan, almost to the Chinese border. I was very lucky if one out of ten issues of the Economist got through the voracious Soviet mail system.

You don't think people like me deserve to participate in the elections, whether donating or voting? It was the only election in which I couldn't vote, not having taken absentee ballots with me. I cared enough about the America system to be teaching it in a tough place. Yet I couldn't vote.

Three cheers for the Americans Abroad, who voted in their primary, are donating and can vote in November via new technology.

Posted by: Lee T | June 12, 2008 12:00 AM

I never thought I'd say it, but I won't vote Obama. He claims not to be a politician but is just that. And he claimed that Hillary always stole his moment of glory. I got really tired of seeing him hold a big speech of victory in another state evertime she had just won. He is greedy and couldn't let her enjoy her win, had to steal her 4 votes, wow. I'm an expat by the way. Yes, Elizabeth, it is amazing how ignorant so many people are that write in. And do you think getting voters from China's going to make a big difference? And does he really think they'll vote for him? I used to live there...there aren't many American's in China, maybe 50,000 at the most. I can't even watch this race anymore. I don't trust him, with his underground connections forget it, the democrates have lost. Have you Obama supporters been listening to the McCain campaign, just as I said. You blew it.

Posted by: 4Clinton | June 11, 2008 9:49 PM

Elizabeth, your comments are correct. However, there seem to be many very ignorant, narrow-minded persons who read "The Washington Post." I was quite surprised when I first started reading some of these blogs at the low levels of education and understanding quite apparent by some "participants"

Posted by: Independent | June 11, 2008 9:17 PM

Hillary Clinton has supporters.

Obama has fans.












Posted by: Anonymous | June 11, 2008 5:55 PM

I have never seen such idiotic comments as some of the ones above. Ex pats ARE Americans and they have as much right to donate as the ones living at home. If you can't do anything other than spout uninformed crap then don't post.

Posted by: Sam | June 11, 2008 2:01 PM

Alas, money is as slippery as crude and can migrate across borders at all hours of the day and night. There is NO doubt that foreign money finds its way into a-MUR-kn politics every day! Is it possible that Saudi money, Chinese money, Mexican drug lord money, Greek shipping magnate money, Australian beer money actually ends up in the pockets of Madison Avenue moguls? John Madison must be turning over in his grave!

Posted by: Yr Frdly Nghbrhd Dg | June 11, 2008 12:07 PM

I seems as usual that most of the people posting( not all) have a selective reading disorder. Any money raised is not foreign money. Its from Americans that work over seas. For gods sakes get your head out and instead of posting subversive and non factual crap you read what is actually there. Perhaps we'll get a President whose actual goal is getting the US back on track, unlike the bozos that we have had in office for the last eight years

Posted by: Anonymous | June 11, 2008 11:30 AM

h2v325s0p7fq > js058nfcsjskz44 [URL=] b1qb59lonybitd69y [/URL] tkw4mxzd6gutic

Posted by: g8sy9h912r | June 11, 2008 4:02 AM

a86ljzpwt > 8dmtpma9z [URL=] r9y0b974 [/URL] m6n7tvr6

Posted by: lx27hzyq2x | June 11, 2008 3:58 AM

God Bless America.
I have always been proud of my country and I will die for it. I am not afraid to call bo a fake and an orchestrated puppet of the marxist/leftists in this country. McCarthy was right on,baby.

Posted by: Radulovich | June 11, 2008 12:55 AM

Obama wants campaign money from China.

China is killing Tibetans.

China supports genocide and crimes against humanity in Sudan for the oil they need to bury the USA.

Many actors have labeled the 2008 Olympics in China the Genocide Olympics.

Hussein Obama still supports China as Christians and Blacks are being killed by Moslem's daily.

Estimates made by the UN in 2007 indicate that 500,000 have been killed in the last 4 years.

The Chinese he seeks money from today fit right in with BHO's other old friends like Wright, Farrakhan, Avery, Lee and Pfleger.

Posted by: Gary11111 | June 11, 2008 12:20 AM

All the article says is Mr. Obama's people will be on Chinese soil trying to raise funds and that what matters is from whom one raises funds, not from where one does it.

However, are the audit trails in place to be able to detect monies that come from foreign sources? This country has enough problems trying to detect illegal sources within our own borders. It will be a lot easier in my opinion to hide inappropriate donations outside the borders of the United States when representatives of that party our outside US borders.

On the other hand, those expatriate US citizens do have the right donate money to their favorite candidate/party. And, along those lines, a candidate/party should have the right to reach out to those US Citizens.

If skulduggery does occur, that simply means we don't have the appropriate checks and balances or the problems are systemic.

Posted by: Chris | June 10, 2008 9:40 PM

Obama supporters are dumber than a rock. Obama is actually a chinese spy sent here to take control of our country and turn it into a resort for communist china.

Posted by: Conspriracy | June 10, 2008 9:21 PM

Sounds like Bill Clinton and Johnny Chung.

Posted by: KB | June 10, 2008 8:56 PM

what an idiot the first commenter is. Expats are American citizens who have the right to vote, but who work overseas. He's not making himself beholden to Chinese, he's getting American money. Geez. And I see a few more posters don't know what ex-pats are. It amazes me that people reading the Washington Post don't know that American expats are American citizens. Sigh. Getting money from expats doesn't mean you are getting money from the countries in which they live.

Posted by: Elizabeth | June 10, 2008 7:24 PM

China has 40% of the US debt. Is Barry going to give them 100% for a few donations? Or is he going to remove the safety requirements for Chinese products? The US needs more lead paint and poisoned toys. Maybe the Chinese will understand him better than US citizens.

Posted by: Jack Straw | June 10, 2008 5:47 PM

All of our money is there, so why not tap into some of it? I think it's a smart move.

Also, having Obama more known abroad cannot hurt our future chances at substantial negotiations with these countries.

It's a win, win I think.

Posted by: Susan | June 10, 2008 4:52 PM

Why doesn't Obama raise Chinese money the traditional Democratic way, through Indonesian intermediaries? Oh well, at least Barry--as Maureen Dowd calls him--won't be there personally.
-Wm Tate,

Posted by: Wm Tate | June 10, 2008 4:21 PM

Actually, donors need to be American Citizens or Legal Permanent Residents ("green card" holders).

Legal Permanent Residents cannot vote but are allowed to contribute to political causes, unlike other aliens.

Posted by: ChrisB | June 10, 2008 3:53 PM

There are thousands of Americans living in China, Hong Kong to be more specific. Good for him because those executives have money like crazy!!!

Posted by: carl29 | June 10, 2008 3:51 PM

OSama Obama, following in Al Gore's footsteps.

Posted by: Anonymous | June 10, 2008 3:51 PM

Obama funds have come from addresses as eclectic as Kabul....lmao!!!

Sorry I'm sure it's military or something. But it is kinda ironic.

Posted by: gskrptr | June 10, 2008 3:51 PM

Um, did you miss that part about the donors being American citizens...

Posted by: Anonymous | June 10, 2008 3:41 PM

I wonder why he doesn't fundraise in Germany? I'm sure he'd make a lot more money there...

Posted by: me. | June 10, 2008 3:33 PM

Does he really need to do this?
I can see the FOX headlines now. "Taliban Financing Obama's Campaign!!!"

Posted by: Anonymous | June 10, 2008 3:27 PM

The comments to this entry are closed.


© 2009 The Washington Post Company