The Sheraton New York Hotel has been getting a lot of pre-Presidential action these last few days. First Rudy Giuliani threw a baseball-themed bash there last Wednesday, March 14. And just four days ago, Hillary Clinton hosted a big-ticket mega-fundraiser headlined by her famous husband, Bill. Last night it was Mitt Romney’s turn. But while his competitors boasted 1000-person, ballroom-sized events, the former governor’s money-raiser was somewhat more modest.
Romney’s New York Fundraising Kickoff, as the event was billed, took place in a long, rectangular conference room located 100 or so twisty feet from the hotel’s second-floor ballroom. There was an open bar for drinks and a single table of cheese, crackers, and crudite for guests to nibble. (Hillary, by contrast, laid on a spead of sirloin and risotto.)
Hosted by a handful of prominent finance types like William Harrison Jr. and Stanley Druckenmiller, the event was filled with middle aged men in suits, as well as a smattering of orthodox Jews and Young Republicans. The head count probably fell somehwere in the low hundreds.
Besides Romney, the two big celebrities of the night were former Governor Bill Weld, who is also the candidate’s New York finance chair, and onetime U.S. Senate candidate Rick Lazio, who stood around shaking hands long after both the candidate and Weld had left.
– Lizzy Ratner