Joe Biden arrives in Park City on Tuesday
July 6, 2012
Vice President Joe Biden is scheduled to travel to Park City next week on a fundraising trip, capping off three weeks of high-profile political events in the area by both of the country’s major political parties.
There is a possibility he will be spending the night locally, but his itinerary had not been made public by the end of the week. One of the Biden events is anticipated to be Tuesday evening in the Snyderville Basin home of John and Kristi Cumming. Kristi Cumming is well known as a supporter of President Obama and was one of the state’s so-called superdelegates to the 2008 Democratic National Convention during which Obama received the party’s nomination.
Obama supporters headed to the fundraiser will pay $8,000 per couple or $5,000 per person to attend a reception with Biden that includes a photo. Someone wanting premium seating will pay $1,000 while general admission costs $500 per person. Young professionals and grassroots supporters may attend for $100. The co-chairs of the event paid $25,000 per couple or raised $50,000.
A number of local Democratic leaders plan to attend the Tuesday event. Glenn Wright, the chairman of the Summit County Democratic Party, said he will donate an undisclosed amount of money for a spot inside.
"I think he’s going to say it’s going to be a close campaign," Wright said, adding that Biden will probably tell the crowd Obama needs to raise money and continue grassroots efforts like door-to-door campaigning.
Wright said the event will be "very successful" given there are many "dedicated, wealthy Democrats in Summit County." He said the event will draw people from across Utah. He said he wants Biden to discuss the Supreme Court ruling in favor of the president’s health care reform.
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Donna McAleer, the Pinebrook Democrat who is the party’s nominee in the 1st Congressional District, hopes to attend on Tuesday. She said she wants the vice president to outline an economic agenda for the next three to five years.
"When he addresses the crowd, I want to hear an economic plan going forward," she said, adding, "How are we going to move forward, a plan to bring down our deficit and a plan to balance our budget."
The Summit County Sheriff’s Office and the Park City Police Department are involved in the security planning for the visit and are working with the Secret Service. Neither Sheriff Dave Edmunds nor Phil Kirk, a police captain, would provide details. The Utah Highway Patrol is also involved, the sheriff said. Edmunds said Biden has several events planned in the Park City area, however.
"It’s going to be significant. No doubt about it," Edmunds said, calling the protection a "large security contingency."
He said roads will be closed at certain times for the vice presidential motorcade. He said a section of S.R. 224 is among the roads that could be closed for a period. The Cumming house is located in a neighborhood off one of the S.R. 224 turnoffs.
"We don’t leave anything to chance when we have a protectee of this stature come to town," Edmunds said.
Biden’s trip is planned shortly after presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney hosted a large event in Deer Valley with high-level donors and a roster of top-shelf GOP figures.
The Park City area since the start of the 2008 election cycle has hosted a series of political fundraisers and gatherings with star power in attendance. Others who raised money locally included Obama, who visited early in the 2008 campaign, President George W. Bush during his last year in office, Jon Huntsman and Rudy Giuliani. First lady Michelle Obama made a fundraising stop in the Snyderville Basin last summer.