Kamala Harris Sets First VP Campaign Event With Support From Reese Witherspoon, Mindy Kaling
Following Tuesday’s announcement of Kamala Harris as Joe Biden’s running mate, the California senator has wasted no time hitting the campaign trail — with her first stop in Hollywood.
The vice presidential nominee will hold her first solo event of the campaign in a launch fundraiser co-chaired by Nicole Avant, former U.S. Ambassador to the Bahamas and wife of Netflix boss Ted Sarandos, and Ambassador Colleen Bell, director of the California Film Commission, along with Mindy Kaling, Reese Witherspoon, Shonda Rhimes, Tory Burch, Amy Griffin, California Lt. Governor Eleni Kounalakis, Mai Lassiter, wife of producer James Lassiter; and Shannon Rotenberg, executive director of Matthew McConaughey’s just keep livin Foundation. Ticket prices will range from $500 for guests to $50,000 for “Champions” and $100,000 for co-chairs. The maximum allowable donation to the Biden Victory Fund is $730,600. Time and date have not yet been set for the virtual event, which will be open to the public.
“Nicole and I have been friends for 25 years and also worked on the Obama campaigns together on the National Finance Team, so we have been preparing for this for sometime. Whoever the nominee, we were prepared to gather people from all over the country to show our enthusiastic support,” Bell, who is a member of Biden’s finance team outside of her commission position, tells The Hollywood Reporter. “Now, the VP candidate is Kamala, who we have both known for many years, so this is very exciting. It is a historic moment, and I am thrilled to help lead the charge to harness all the support we possibly can to make sure Senator Harris and VP Biden are elected.”
Harris’ event follows her and Biden’s first ticket event on Wednesday, a grassroots fundraiser in Delaware; the campaign says it has raised $34 million in the less than 48 hours since Harris was announced.
It’s no surprise that Harris would come to Hollywood to kick off her VP run, as the entertainment industry heavily embraced her during her presidential campaign. Some 48 percent of the 2020 donations made by members of The Hollywood Reporter’s THR 100 list — an annual ranking of the most powerful people in the entertainment industry — went to Harris’ campaign, amounting to $73,580, according to Federal Election Commission data disclosed in July 2019. Joe Biden’s presidential bid came in second place, bringing in $22,400, or 15 percent of the total 2020 donation pool.
Some of her biggest previous donors include J.J. Abrams, Anthony Anderson, Elizabeth Banks, Eva Longoria, Ryan Murphy, Alfre Woodard, Walt Disney Studios co-chairman Alan Horn and ICM Partners managing director Chris Silbermann. During Sen. Harris’ presidential run, she hosted a string of L.A. fundraisers in July 2019, including a luncheon at the home of real estate developer Tom Safran, followed by an event at the home of former U.S. Ambassador John B. Emerson that was co-hosted by Ron Silverman, Cooper Hefner and Ellen Goldsmith-Vein.