Broadway's Biggest Stars Join President Biden for Fundraising Concert Amid Hollywood Strike
The Writers Guild of America and SAG-AFTRA strike have led President Joe Biden to seek support from Broadway artists for his reelection campaign, with a fundraising concert featuring Sara Bareilles, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and Ben Platt. Biden's relationship with Hollywood is on hold due to the strike and concerns about potential controversies. Despite this, his fundraising ability remains unaffected, and he continues to accumulate funds for his challenging reelection campaign.
President Joe Biden's reelection campaign is receiving support from some of Broadway's biggest names as the Writers Guild of America and actors of the SAG-AFTRA union continue to strike. With Hollywood currently off-limits, Biden has turned to the theater for fundraising. Artists such as Sara Bareilles, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and Ben Platt will be joining him on Monday to help raise funds for his 2024 presidential campaign. The Actors' Equity Association, overseeing the theatrical work in the United States, has remained operational during the strike.
Additionally, Biden will be attending another private fundraiser in Manhattan on the same day. Biden's close relationship with the entertainment industry has traditionally relied on fundraising from powerful figures in Hollywood. However, the ongoing strike has temporarily put that aspect on hold. As one of the most pro-union presidents in decades, Biden wants to avoid any controversy. Biden's advisors, including former DreamWorks co-founder Jeffrey Katzenberg, have encouraged him to steer clear of Los Angeles until the strike is resolved. While Biden has maintained a somewhat subdued fundraising schedule since announcing his campaign, some donors are concerned that time is running out to accumulate the necessary funds for a challenging reelection campaign.
However, campaign officials assure that they are still raising substantial amounts of money from other big-dollar events. Despite the strike, Biden's fundraising ability remains unaffected. There are some worries that even raising funds from southern California donors who are not part of the entertainment industry could lead to further complications. Demonstrations outside the homes or venues of these wealthy donors would highlight the contrast between Biden's pro-labor stance and the wealth associated with the entertainment industry's elite. The guidance from Biden's advisors is to avoid unnecessary controversies and picket lines.
Biden and the Democratic National Committee raised over $72 million for his reelection campaign in the ten weeks after he announced his candidacy in 2024. While it was a significant amount, it fell short of breaking any incumbent records. In comparison, former President Donald Trump raised over $35 million in the second quarter of his fundraising campaign. Trump, despite facing legal issues, remains the frontrunner for the Republican Party.
Aside from Sara Bareilles, Lin-Manuel Miranda, and Ben Platt, other artists scheduled to perform at the Broadway fundraising concert for Biden include Annaleigh Ashford, Alex Edelman, Josh Gad, Christopher Jackson, LaChanze, Ruthie Ann Miles, Leslie Odom Jr., Andrew Rannells, Aaron Tveit, and Betsy Wolfe. The event will be directed by Thomas Kail, with music supervision by Alex Lacamoire. Additional contributors include Andy Blankenbuehler, Benj Pasek, Justin Paul, and Amanda Green.
After the fundraising events, Biden will turn his attention to diplomatic engagements at the United Nations General Assembly. He is expected to attend the annual gathering of world leaders on Tuesday and Wednesday. Following his diplomatic commitments, Biden will conclude his visit to New York with two more fundraisers before returning to Washington.