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McCain's Innovators and Trailblazers

Sen. John McCain's (R-Ariz.) campaign announced today that it had collected $15 million in March and had $10 million left in the bank. Late tonight, the campaign released its bundlers -- the men and women charged with collecting dozens or even hundreds of checks from friends, neighbors and associates for the Arizona Republican.

The Fix got an early glimpse at the 106 individuals who are either "Innovators" (meaning they have raised $250,000 or more for McCain) or "Trailblazers" ($100,000). The list, which is now on McCain's website, has 34 Innovators and 72 Traiblazers.

McCain's bundler program is built on the incredibly successful "Pioneer" and "Ranger" program built by George W. Bush in 2000 and perfected four years later. The most valuable individuals in a bundling program are not necessarily the wealthiest individuals but rather those individuals with the deepest Rolodexes and a willingness to ask and ask and ask.

McCain and former senior aide John Weaver spent months courting these major donors in the runup to the Arizona senator's presidential announcement. While McCain and former governor Mitt Romney (Mass.) won the race for most Pioneers and Rangers, the Arizona senator's campaign still struggled mightily to raise the money he needed to fund the primary. He won't have that problem now as the party's official nominee.

The full list of Innovators and Trailblazers is available after the jump but a few names stood out:

* Alfonse D'Amato: The former New York senator was originally behind former senator Fred Thompson's (Tenn.) presidential campaign but has clearly taken to raising money for McCain with gusto.

*Lew Eisenberg: Eisenberg has long been one of the top money men in the party and his backing of McCain is sure to continue to pay dividends -- literally. Not only is Eisenberg a McCain Innovator, he's also serving as finance chairman for the Republican National Committee's "Victory" program this fall.

*Bobbie Kilberg: Kilberg has strong ties to the Bush family, having served in several positions during the entirety of President George H.W. Bush's term in office. She was also expected to be the Republican candidate for Virginia lieutenant governor in 1993 but was defeated by the more conservative Michael Farris.

Innovators ($250,000 or more)

Stanton Anderson, Washington, DC
George Argyros, Costa Mesa, CA
Michael Ashner, Oyster Bay, NY
Louis Bacon, New York, NY
Brian Ballard, Tallahassee, FL
James Barksdale, Ridgeland, MS
Wayne Berman, Washington, DC
Kirk Blalock, Alexandria, VA
William Bloomfield, Jr., Manhattan Beach, CA
Donald Bren, Newport Beach, CA
Mark Broxmeyer, Glen Head, NY
Jim Click, Jr., Tucson, AZ
Michael Crossen, Boston, MA
Raymond Dalio, Westport, CT
Alfonse D'Amato, new york, NY
Donald Diamond, Tucson, AZ
Lewis Eisenberg, New York, NY
David Girard-diCarlo, Washington, DC
Jon Hammes, Brookfield, WI
Manuel Kadre, Miami, FL
Bobbie Kilberg, Mclean, VA
Tom Loeffler, San Antonio, TX
Frederic Malek, Mc Lean, VA
Timothy McKone, Washington, DC
John Moran, Palm Beach, FL
Bob and Michelle Mosbacher, Houston, TX
James Nicholson, Detroit, MI
R. Pate, Mclean, VA
Andrew Perenchio, Los Angeles, CA
William Powell, San Antonio, TX
Scott Rothstein, Fort Lauderdale, FL
John Thain, Rye, NY
Ronald Weiser, Ann Arbor, MI

Tralblazers ($100,000 or more)

Robert Asher, Chicago, IL
Lawrence Bathgate, III, Bayhead, NJ
Steven Betts, Phoenix, AZ
Judy Black, Alexandria, VA
August Busch, III, St. Louis, MO
Michael Chae, New York, NY
John Chambers, Los Altos Hills, CA
B. C. Clippard, Jr., Nashville, TN
Charles Cobb, Jr., Miami, FL
James Courter, Hackettstown, NJ
Michael Cox, Livonia, MI
Lorne Craner, Alexandria, VA
John Dasburg, Miami, FL
Mimi Dawson, Washington, DC
Robert Delgado, Phoenix, AZ
John Donahue, Naples, FL
Stephen Duprey, Concord, NH
Patrick Durkin, New York, NY
Lawrence Finder, Houston, TX
T. Fiorentino, Jr., Ponte Vedra Beach, FL
James Forbes, New York, NY
Sidney Goodfriend, New York, NY
Deborah Gullett, Phoenix, AZ
Oliver & Sharon Harper, Phoenix, AZ
Michael Hellon, Tucson, AZ
John Hess, New York, NY
Alfred Hoffman, Jr., Fort Myers, FL
Gaylord Hughey, Jr., Tyler, TX
Gary Hunt, Irvine, CA
Robert Johnson, IV, New York, NY
Joseph Harper/Andrew Cummins, San Francisco, CA
Gerry Kamilos, Gold River, CA
David Knott, Sr., Syosett, NY
C. Kojaian, Bloomfield Hills, MI
Henry Kravis, New York, NY
J. Lanni, Las Vegas, NV
James Lee, Jr., Darien, CT
Edmund Lee, New York, NY
John Lehman, Jr., New York, NY
Gregory Maffei, Cherry Hills Village, CO
Ben McDavid, Fort Worth, TX
Kyle McSlarrow, Falls Church, VA
Kit Moncrief, Fort Worth, TX
Peter Newman, Pebble Beach, CA
Peter Nicholas, Jr., Natick, MA
Dennis Nixon, Laredo, TX
Jack Oliver, St. Louis, MO
Peter Peterson, New York, NY
Alec Poitevint, Bainbridge, GA
Charles Potter, Jr., Dundee, IL
David Pottruck, San Francisco, CA
Sloan Rappoport, Washington, DC
Scott Rechler, Glen Head, NY
Richard Roeder, Los Angeles, CA
Charles Roemer, LA
Sig Rogich, Las Vegas, NV
Richard Rosenbaum, Scarsdale, NY
Bob and Edith Royall, Huger, SC
Harry Sargeant, III, Gulf Stream, FL
Joseph Schmuckler, New York, NY
O. Shansby, San Francisco, CA
William Siart, Santa Monica, CA
Harry Sloan, Los Angeles, CA
Glenn Steil, Sr., Bonita Springs, FL
Marc Stern, Malibu, CA
William Strong, Chicago, IL
Linda Tavlarios, Darien, CT
Mark Treanor, Charlotte, NC
Bryan Wagner, New Orleans, LA
David Walden, Houston, TX
Gregory Wendt, San Francisco, CA
Richard Wiley, Arlington, VA
Charles Yob, Sr., Hesperia, MI

By Chris Cillizza  |  April 18, 2008; 8:21 PM ET
Categories:  Eye on 2008  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   Del.icio.us   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: The Line: McCain Puts 3 Key States in Play
Next: Special Weekend Wag the Blog: Debating the Debate

Comments

Only Barack Obama can unite our country and the world in the direction of cooperation and peace.

Hill and Billy (HillBilly) Clinton must return their ill gotten $109,000,000 favor money back to the South American governments, since she's out and can't influence laws favoring South American cartels and hurting the American People.

Mumbles McCentury McCain has no qualifications to be president. Put him in a lecture hall as a boring uninspirational professor.

Posted by: Christopheur | April 23, 2008 1:33 PM | Report abuse

fewer than half of the registered democrats came out to vote. What does that tell you??
I don't think that all of those white male voters who helped Clinton in PA will ever vote for her if she was running against McCain.
The Clintons have never asked what they could do for their country, in the spirit of JFK; it has been the exact opposite.
If voters continue to vote for the Clinton types and the multi-millionaires they will have voted "rich" and will live "poor".
The entrenched politicians already see themselves as the ruling class; the rest of us are peasants. That's how you lose your rights that are guaranteed by the Constitution.
Do what you think is best. Hope the Clinton voters do not get their Chinese blessing.

Posted by: Herbo | April 23, 2008 9:53 AM | Report abuse

All of you high-as-kite folks tweeting about the 35k people at Obama's rally - how many were there to support and how many showed up for the spectacle? I wouldn't vote for the man under any circumstances, but I would have gone nonetheless just to hear him speak.

Chris, on a more serious note (and why can't you erase half the drivel on your comments!), you failed to mention John Thain, one of the McCain innovators. Thain's the new CEO of Merrill/former CEO of the NYSE. If I had to fathom a guess, I'd say he'd be short-listed for Treasury should McCain win in November. What's also interesting are the absentees from the Ranger/Pioneer program in '04.

Posted by: GRS | April 20, 2008 2:03 PM | Report abuse

JD wrote: "Yeah, I'm sure Hillary or Obama don't use bundlers. Oh wait..."

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2008/02/21/AR2008022101131.html?sid=ST2008022200029

The Anti-Lobbyist, Advised by Lobbyists
Washington Post

'... Public Citizen, a group that monitors campaign fundraising, has found that McCain has more bundlers -- people who gather checks from networks of friends and associates -- from the lobbying community than any other presidential candidate from either party.

By the group's current count, McCain has at least 59 federal lobbyists raising money for his campaign, compared with 33 working for Republican Rudolph W. Giuliani and 19 working for Democrat Clinton...'

There are zero federal lobbyists working as bundlers for Obama.

Posted by: kevrobb | April 19, 2008 10:32 PM | Report abuse

oscar I was a founding member and contributor to moveon and agree 100 per cent with HC's sentiments. They have been docrtainare and demand pure support of Sen Obama with their constant rants against HC.
I emailed their director in Dec and told them I no longer will contribute or suuport them as long as they take such a narrow attitude towards their members and have asked other longtime moveon members to boycott them.

Posted by: Leichtman | April 19, 2008 12:45 PM | Report abuse

sorry, not "radical", meant to say "activist". It's odd, in that tape she seems to be pushing a lot of the talking points that Karl Rove uses against MoveOn. I am really starting to wonder what her motivations are at this point.

Posted by: oscars2212 | April 19, 2008 9:12 AM | Report abuse

Hey Chris I wonder are you going to discuss this story on Huffpost about a tape from a Clinton fundraiser where she goes after MoveOn and other "radical" elements of the democratic party? Odd that she would want "every vote to count" and then complain when a certain type of voter comes out in large numbers against her...

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/celeste-fremon/clinton-slams-democratic_b_97484.html

Posted by: oscars2212 | April 19, 2008 9:10 AM | Report abuse

vammap; Newsweek is full of themselves . Richard Wolfe just set the bar at 30 per cent in Pa to try and justify the inaccurcy of their outlier poll. Talk of trying to influence an election. Why not say she must win by 40 or 50 per cent while we are at it. Sen Obama had thpse kinds of rallies in Ohio Carmen. How did that work out. And for those cheering Robt Reich, HC picked up 3 superdelegates yesterday.

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2008 8:47 AM | Report abuse

Hey Chris, did you by chance notice that 35,000 people showed up for Senator Obama's rally in Philly last night? (Just by chance?)

Posted by: Carmen Cameron | April 19, 2008 8:29 AM | Report abuse

Wow, copying Bush's idea of Rangers and Pioneers, while renaming them Innovators and Trailblazers, is not very innovative or trailblazing.

Surely "Straight Talk" would require calling them what they are: Influence-Peddlars and Lobbyists.

Posted by: kevrobb | April 19, 2008 6:40 AM

Yeah, I'm sure Hillary or Obama don't use bundlers. Oh wait...

On another note: does it strike anyone as unusual that McCain only has $10m in the bank right now? Shouldn't he have that built up to 30 or 40 by now? I mean, what's he got to spend it on?

His best strategy now is to let Obama and HRC tear each other down, stay on the sidelines, doon't say anything stupid, and keep the tape running for his own commercials.

It's amazing how the Dems are about to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. In what should be a huge Dem year, McCain is now beating both HRC and Obama head to head, in the poll I saw yesterday. Either way it slices, half the dems will be "bitter" once the choice is made, and I could easily see turnout suppressed in the fall (ESPECIALLY if HRC stea.. um, I mean, wins it).

Posted by: JD | April 19, 2008 8:18 AM | Report abuse

Are you aware that Mr. McCain is in violation of FEC rules, concerning raising & spending campain money when he is already commited to Federal campaign financing?

I believe the DNC and others have already filed lawsuits to stop his illegal campaign activities.

But Mr. Cillizza, Nowhere in your article do you mention this.... WHY?

I have no dog in this Presidential election, I assure you.

My only concern is of journalistic integrity... and you seem to be wandering farther away from that goal everyday.

Tweety Bird Matthews and Timmy Russert are NOT very good journalistic role models. They are mostly hated by everyone outside of the Beltway Cocktail Crowd for their shameless pandering.

You need to get out of Washington DC more often, and discover what America is really thinking about.

Just report the truth, the WHOLE truth, and NOTHING but the truth.

Posted by: rustyk4 | April 19, 2008 7:12 AM | Report abuse

Wow, copying Bush's idea of Rangers and Pioneers, while renaming them Innovators and Trailblazers, is not very innovative or trailblazing.

Surely "Straight Talk" would require calling them what they are: Influence-Peddlars and Lobbyists.

Posted by: kevrobb | April 19, 2008 6:40 AM | Report abuse

The sole purpose of organizing fundraisers into Pioneers and Rangers (or "Innovators" and "Trailblazers") is that fundraisers want to know their efforts are being noted, and will be rewarded when their candidate gets his hands on power.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A29142-2004May15.html
'The Pioneer tracking system ensures that hard work gets noticed. That's why Rep. Rob Portman (R-Ohio) signed up this year. He read that Dunn, Speaker J. Dennis Hastert (R-Ill.), and others were Pioneers. Portman had already raised money, "but I didn't have a tracking number. I finally decided to get one. I wanted to be supportive, and be viewed as supportive."'

Every person on the list given above expects specific favors in return for their fundraising. Calling them Innovators or Trailblazers (I'm surprised he didn't use "Mavericks") is more than just a title, it's a promise - that their 'special needs' will be addressed by Pres McCain.

Posted by: OD | April 19, 2008 4:25 AM | Report abuse

'Asked whether the president gives any special preference to campaign contributors in making decisions about policy, appointments or other matters, White House spokesman Trent Duffy said, "Absolutely not." The president, Duffy said, "bases his policy decisions on what's best for the American people."

Pioneers interviewed for these articles were reluctant to discuss on the record their contacts with the administration. "That's dead man's talk," one said. The Bush campaign declined repeated requests to reveal the entire 2000 list of Pioneers, saying it is contained in computer files they can no longer access...

"The campaign is tracking them and giving them credit -- and supposedly all the access and influence that comes with huge campaign contributions," said McDonald of Texans for Public Justice. He said the Bush campaign has never released a complete list of Pioneers and Rangers with the specific amounts of money they have raised. Once, in response to a lawsuit, campaign officials said that such a list was not available.

"It is unbelievable that the most successful fundraising list in the history of politics has been misplaced," McDonald said.

(Note: One reason they're so cagey is that the top name on any alphabetical list of Bush Pioneers and Rangers is one they'd rather not mention: Jack Abramoff, Bush Pioneer.)

Posted by: OD | April 19, 2008 4:04 AM | Report abuse

'"It is noticed that you are doing extra work and you have a lot of friends in the administration," said Rep. Jennifer Dunn (R-Wash.), a Pioneer who was considered for a presidential appointment. Her son, Reagan Dunn, was hired by the Justice Department, and her new husband, E. Keith Thomson, was appointed last year as the director of the Office of Trade Relations. "A lot [of Pioneers] have a particular interest and you have lots of contacts, and you say, 'I'd like to sign up to be an ambassador when one comes along.'"...

Nancy Goodman Brinker, one of the 23 Pioneers from the 2000 campaign who became an ambassador, said she does not remember exactly when or who first brought up a diplomatic appointment. She said it "seemed to evolve" after someone asked her whether she wanted to serve. The next thing she knew, she was talking to Clay Johnson in the White House personnel office about her choices...'

The ambassadorships given are not just minor ones. The US ambassador to London since 2005, Robert Holmes Tuttle, was a 2004 Bush Pioneer (ie $100,000-plus). This car dealer (yes, really) been a disaster in Britain, getting into a major argument with the mayor over his refusal to pay under London's road-pricing scheme. Britain's minister of defence had to apologise to Parliament after Tuttle lied to him about US weapons used in Falluja.

The 23 figure is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to buying ambassadorships. Many other ambassadors are major contributors without being Pioneers or Rangers.

For example, Robert Davis McCallum, Jr, ambassador to Australia, only gave 12,350 to the GOP himself, but tobacco company RJ Reynolds, which he worked for, gave $3.7 million to GOP candidates.

Clifford Sobel, ambassador to Brazil, is not a GOP donor at all, and looks squeaky clean ... until you learn that his wife Barbara was a 2004 Bush Ranger (ie 200,000+).

America's reputation abroad depends partly on its ambassadors, yet these posts are thrown to hacks and lobbyists with no experience or expertise. It really is an insult to every country that has to accept one of these people.

Posted by: OD | April 19, 2008 3:55 AM | Report abuse

Report from Philly Obama rally (and Bruce-watch continues):

Largest crowd of this cycle, 35 tho+ in front of Independence Hall. Didn't start until dark, about 8:30 p.m. Very inter-racial, all ages, crowd totally well-behaved and attentive.

(Sound system was not as loud as it usually is at his rallies, and the sound failed at one point; gremlins?)

Obama talks about "fake controversies", otherwise reprises his stump speech. Rumors that Bruce Springsteen would appear didn't materialize... perhaps due to the death of E Street Band organist Danny Federici.

But speculation continues that the Boss will show up in Philly for a solo appearance prior to Tuesday's primary, perhaps on Monday, a day off on his current tour and a day when Obama is slated to make a third appearance on "The Colbert Report," taping 7 p.m. at the University of Pennsylvania.

Posted by: scrivener | April 19, 2008 3:48 AM | Report abuse

Report from Philly Obama rally (and Bruce-watch continues):

Largest crowd of this cycle, 35 tho+ in front of Independence Hall. Didn't start until dark, about 8:30 p.m. Very inter-racial, all ages, crowd totally well-behaved and attentive.

(Sound system was not as loud as it usually is at his rallies, and the sound failed at one point; gremlins?)

Obama talks about "fake controversies", otherwise reprises his stump speech. Rumors that Bruce Springsteen would appear didn't materialize... perhaps due to the death of E Street Band organist Danny Federici.

But speculation continues that the Boss will show up in Philly for a solo appearance prior to Tuesday's primary, perhaps on Monday, a day off on his current tour and a day when Obama is slated to make a third appearance on "The Colbert Report," taping 7 p.m. at the University of Pennsylvania.

Posted by: scrivener | April 19, 2008 3:45 AM | Report abuse

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A29142-2004May15.html

THE BUSH MONEY MACHINE : Fundraising's Rewards
Pioneers Fill War Chest, Then Capitalize
By Thomas B. Edsall, Sarah Cohen and James V. Grimaldi
Washington Post Staff Writers
Sunday, May 16, 2004

"...Since 1998, Bush has raised a record $296.3 million in campaign funds, giving him an overwhelming advantage in running against Vice President Al Gore and now Sen. John F. Kerry (D-Mass.). At least a third of the total -- many sources believe more than half -- was raised by 631 people...

Of the 246 fundraisers identified by The Post as Pioneers in the 2000 campaign, 104 -- or slightly more than 40 percent -- ended up in a job or an appointment. A study by The Washington Post, partly using information compiled by Texans for Public Justice, which is planning to release a separate study of the Pioneers this week, found that 23 Pioneers were named as ambassadors and three were named to the Cabinet: Donald L. Evans at the Commerce Department, Elaine L. Chao at Labor and Tom Ridge at Homeland Security.

At least 37 Pioneers were named to postelection transition teams, which helped place political appointees into key regulatory positions affecting industry.

A more important reward than a job, perhaps, is access. For about one-fifth of the 2000 Pioneers, this is their business -- they are lobbyists whose livelihoods depend on the perception that they can get things done in the government. More than half the Pioneers are heads of companies -- chief executive officers, company founders or managing partners -- whose bottom lines are directly affected by a variety of government regulatory and tax decisions.

When Kenneth L. Lay, for example, a 2000 Pioneer and then-chairman of Enron Corp., was a member of the Energy Department transition team, he sent White House personnel director Clay Johnson III a list of eight persons he recommended for appointment to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Two were named to the five-member commission....

Posted by: Anonymous | April 19, 2008 3:35 AM | Report abuse

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2008/04/18/obama-greeted-by-largest-_n_97524.html

CC-I got better bundler for you, 35,000 people bundled together

Posted by: dewanitum | April 19, 2008 12:00 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: bob | April 18, 2008 11:56 PM | Report abuse

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