Sunday, September 20, 2020

Been Saying It For Years

This doesn't mean no rich people throw down the top contribution, but it does mean that a focus on small donor money would be sufficient. People court top donors in part because "they" want to run in the fields with top donors. These are complicated transactional relationships.

I mean, forget politics - if your local opera house could fund itself primarily through small donors, would they? Again, maybe some rich people would throw down, but elite philanthropy is a world that exists to give a bunch of rich people something to do and a way to feel important, and gives people in the "fundraising world" opportunities to rub elbows with important rich people.

In politics, the rich donors have more that they want, and also more to give than just cash for candidates. These are mutually beneficial networking opportunities. Jobs and perks for everyone and access to the Treasury for the donors. A lot more than rubbing elbows.

They love the small donor money, but they love the rich important donors even more.