What does it take to throw a presidential campaign kickoff for thousands of people on a snowy February afternoon in Minnesota?
That depends on:
How many cookies you need with your name in icing. ($3,375)
If you need a whole lot of coffee, cocoa and cider for those assembled. ($2,585)
Whether you want a local, Grammy-winning ensemble to do the National Anthem. ($2,500)
If you need a DJ to boom music while the anticipation builds. ($1,900)
The number of portable toilets you need. ($1,345)
If you need traffic signs to point the way. ($1,728)
If you want to rent the riverside park with a view of the downtown skyline. ($5,358)
The heat-keeping tents to provide a haven for VIPs, on-deadline reporters and other guests. ($32,337)
And if you want an event planner to throw it all together. ($46,433)
Democratic Sen. Amy Klobuchar’s first campaign finance report as a 2020 presidential candidate offers a glimpse of those and other expenses that appear to be tied to her official launch this winter.
The one thing Klobuchar couldn’t buy: the weather. But she’s made the most of the snow-globe atmosphere around that February kickoff on Boom Island. The images are part of many television stories about her run, and it gives her room to talk about hardy Midwesterners wherever she goes.
All told, Klobuchar spent more than $1.8 million in the early months of her presidential run. Almost half of that went toward acquiring fundraising and voter lists, paying consultants who search out donors and direct mail aimed at getting the message out, and you guessed it, more money in.