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Romney rakes in more than $1M at Reno fundraisers

Posted: August 4, 2012 7:30 p.m.
Updated: August 4, 2012 7:30 p.m.

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney speaks to reporters after he campaigned at McCandless Trucking in North Las Vegas, Nev., on Friday.

 

RENO, Nev. (AP) — Mitt Romney raked in more than $1 million at a series of fundraisers at a Reno gated community, drawing a group of protesters who decried the influence of money in politics.

Romney raised $500,000 alone at a $25,000-per-person luncheon Friday at a home in the upscale Eaglesnest community, the Reno Gazette-Journal reported. The private event was limited to 20 people.

A discussion and photo opportunity with Romney went for $10,000, while a discussion but no photo with him cost $5,000. Attendance at a meeting with Romney and others went for $2,500.

"We surpassed our $1 million goal very substantially," said Patty Wade, fundraiser coordinator and Reno businesswoman.

A small group of Moveon.org and Occupy Reno protesters waved placards outside the gated community.

They criticized the influence of major donors to both major political parties, saying the money given to candidates could be better spent.

"I'm with Occupy Reno, and every week we feed over 300 hungry people at the homeless shelter," Julia Hammett told the Gazette-Journal. "And it really hurts to think how many people we could feed with the money that just one of these donors is giving for a photo op."

Law enforcement authorities moved protesters to another entrance of Eaglesnest, sparing Romney from having to ride through a gauntlet of signs, including one that read, "Old Coots Against Romney."

Romney showed up about an hour late for the fundraisers, which meant Reno Mayor Bob Cashell had to leave before seeing him because of another commitment.

Romney spoke about his plans to create jobs and strengthen the economy, Reno-area restaurateur Luther Mack said.

Nevada is among about eight swing states being tightly contested by Romney and President Barack Obama.

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