Joe Biden’s newly formed inaugural committee was announced on Monday. The challenge is how to put on a presidential inauguration during a pandemic. The committee will accept donations from individuals up to $500,000 and corporate donations up to $1 million. Is the Democrat Party the party of millionaires and billionaires now?
I’m old enough to remember when Democrats eagerly criticized Republican presidential inaugural committees for big-money donations. President Trump’s inaugural committee even drew multiple investigations, including from the US Attorney’s office in New York’s Southern District and from the House Oversight Committee. I’m sure everything will be totally legit with million-dollar corporate donations floating around for Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’s inauguration festivities, right? And those individuals contributing $500,000 probably aren’t expecting any quid pro quo either.
In order to stay woke, though, the incoming administration will maintain its ban on anything having to do with the fossil fuel industry. No contributions will be accepted from fossil fuel companies, their executives, and political action committees. Also banned from contributing are registered lobbyists and foreign agents. This is a continuation of the rules put in place by Biden during the campaign. Initially, a limit of $100,000 was announced but that was later explained as the limit allowed by the ActBlue fundraising platform that the inaugural committee is using for online donations. The inaugural committee didn’t set that limit.
During the campaign a ban on donations from registered lobbyists and foreign agents, and anything over $200 from fossil fuel company employees.was in place. The new ban goes further by including a ban on “fossil fuel companies (i.e., companies whose primary business is the extraction, processing, distribution or sale of oil, gas or coal), their executives, or from PACs organized by them.” But, by allowing million-dollar corporate donations from other industries, a green light has been given for businesses to come out and show their support for the Biden-Harris administration. While most workers in the oil and gas industry tend to be conservative voters, executives and upper management of the big oil companies often support whichever side of the aisle that looks to be heading for the White House. It’s a business decision. In this case, though, the oil and gas executives must know if they support the Biden-Harris administration, they are supporting renewed restrictions and regulations, probably even more so than what happened during the Obama-Biden administration. The Obama-Biden administration did their best to completely cripple the fossil fuel industry. With the industry already struggling because of the coronavirus pandemic and less fuel being consumed, the last thing the industry needs is over zealous climate change scolds running the show again.
The fossil fuel industry has been a part of finding alternative energy solutions for many years, by the way, yet to hear the woke crowd disparage fossil fuel executives as criminals destroying the planet, you wouldn’t know that. But, in the case of Status Quo Joe, it’s all about appearance so as not to upset the far-left . If it makes Democrats feel better to pick winners and losers in industry, that is what they will do.
The committee’s leadership team was announced. As with other personnel announcements, Biden is sticking with keeping those familiar to him close by.
Also on Monday, the Biden transition announced the leadership team for the inaugural committee. Tony Allen, the president of Delaware State University, a prominent historically black college, was named chief executive officer of the committee.
Former Biden campaign senior advisor and chief operating officer Manu Varghese will serve as the executive director, joined by two deputy executive directors: Erin Wilson, a former Biden campaign aide, and Yvanna Cancela, a Nevada state senator.
The Biden team is preening about setting limits on corporate contributions and the media is happy to contrast that decision to the Trump inauguration committee’s decision to not limit contributions.
Biden’s new fundraising rules represent a stark departure from the inauguration of President Donald Trump, Biden’s predecessor. Trump’s 2017 inaugural committee placed no limits on the amount of money corporations and individuals were permitted to donate, as long as they were not foreign.
As a result, Trump raised a staggering $107 million for his inaugural events, which included three official inaugural balls and a bevy of VIP events in and around Trump’s Washington, D.C. hotel.
There probably isn’t a need to raise such a large amount of money this time since the festivities will have to be scaled back to accommodate mitigation orders in place for the coronavirus pandemic. It seems a bit ironic that Biden goes out of his way to lecture about taking safety precautions against the spread of the virus, because he thinks it makes him look better than Trump, yet he is continuing on with inauguration activities. Shouldn’t such a self-righteous scold just cancel the celebrations until the pandemic leaves us? Has science changed?
Incoming White House chief of staff Ron Klain says the inauguration may be planned more like the Democrat convention was planned to accommodate the pandemic – with virtual events. I don’t know if you watched any of that convention but it was truly dreadful.
“They’re going to try to have an inauguration that honors the importance and the symbolic meaning of the moment, but also does not result in the spread of disease. That’s our goal,” Klain said during a Nov. 22 appearance on ABC’s “This Week.”
“You know, we ran a very effective and I think engaging Democratic convention this year in August, in a way that was safe for the people to participate and watch it, in a way that communicates with the American people,” Klain added.
Joe Biden is finally getting his presidential inauguration, after three attempts and several decades of trying to become president, and now he’s limited by a pandemic. If “containing” the virus is his top priority and he’s going to tackle it on Day One, as he has pledged to do, it seems odd that he’s moving forward on public celebrations. I guess only Trump celebrations and events are the ones that must be condemned as potential superspreaders, right?