U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, one of Capitol Hill's most endangered Democrats, drops into Seattle on Friday for a pricey fund raising luncheon at the Arctic Club.
The tab is $2,400 to be a "host" and $1,000 to be a guest at the event, officially sponsored by Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Wash.
Reid and Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., are both members of the Senate's Democratic leadership, and both up for reelection this fall. Murray is, however, stressing the work she does in this Washington.
"Maria is hosting the event: I know I will be in Spokane," Murray said on Tuesday.
Reid is seeking his fifth term in the Senate. He has won and lost close election races in Nevada: He is currently trailing two Republican challengers in the polls. Ex-Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin headlined a big anti-Reid Tea Party rally in the senator's home town late last month.
But Reid is stressing how his national influence benefits Nevada, citing the Obama administration decision to abandon proposed use of Yucca Mountain, northwest of Las Vegas, as a national nuclear waste repository. (GOP Sen. Chic Hecht, whom Reid defeated in 1986, got off a classic blooper line when he declared Nevada would never let itself become a "nuclear suppository.")
As of the end of last year, Reid had raised nearly $15 million in campaign money since he was last reelected in 2004, and had $8.7 million in the bank. He raised an estimated $1.5 million in the first quarter of 2010, aided by an appearance in Las Vegas by President Obama.
Democratic givers will be hit up twice on Friday. Rep. Norm Dicks, D-Wash., the state's most senior and influential congressman, is putting on his own event at the Washington Athletic Club.
Comment: This is a substantial amount of money...but want to get it out of Senatorial campaigns? Repeal the 17th Amendment and end the special interest peddling and the huge sums of money.