Hollywood Figures Raise for California House Democrats at Wasserman Event

Wasserman fundraiser
Lilly Lawrence/ABImages

Six Democratic candidates hoping to flip House seats in California raised more than a half-million dollars at a fundraiser on Tuesday at the home of Laura and Casey Wasserman, drawing donors such as Haim Saban, Brian Grazer, Dana Walden, and Chris Silbermann.

A source said that more than $600,000 was raised at the event, which featured candidates Josh Harder, T.J. Cox, Andrew Janz, Katie Hill, Gil Cisneros, Katie Porter, Harley Rouda, and Mike Levin. Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) headlined the event, which drew about 200 people.

The turnout for the event reflected the interest that Hollywood Democratic figures are taking in House races. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, showbiz sources have donated almost $33 million this cycle, and the amount could very well surpass a past midterm fundraising record by the entertainment industry.

Also at the event were Lee Daniels, Jimmy Miller, Laura Shell, Tom Freston, Amos Bahai, Jay Sures, and John Emerson.

Tickets to the event started at $500 per person, with a $100 price for 18-25-year-old young professionals. The top price is $21,600 for co-chairs. The proceeds will go to the California Candidates Victory Fund, a joint committee set up by the candidates.

Rouda, who is seeking to unseat longtime Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, told Variety last week that the industry support to his race and other races has been “invaluable.”

“They are mobilizing. They are engaging. They supporting these campaigns with their time, their talent and their treasures,” he told Variety in an interview last week.

He said that the interest in the midterms reflected that in his Orange County district.

“People are engaged in the political process in ways we have never seen before because they are concerned about the direction of their country,” he said.

(Pictured: Laura Wasserman and Haim Saban.)