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Hail to the Fundraiser-in-Chief: The Evolution of Presidential Fundraising Travel, 1977-2004
Unformatted Document Text:  suburbs of Washington, DC that are only a few miles from the White House and aren’t comparable to other types of presidential travel. Events at presidential homes that serve a second White House were not coded. As presidents often met with foreign leaders there or conducted other affairs of state, events there seem best categorized as an extension of their Washington activity. Thus, events for Ronald Reagan at his ranch, Rancho del Cielo, in California, events for George H.W. Bush in Kennebunkport, Maine, and events for George W. Bush in Crawford, Texas are excluded. For Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, who did not have homes that served as a second White House, brief exchanges with reporters that were not part of public events in Plains, Georgia and Little Rock, Arkansas, respectively, were not coded as public events for this study. Patterns of Presidential Travel for Fundraising How have patterns of presidential travel for fundraising varied both within terms and over time? As Table 1 illustrates, overall levels of fundraisers attended have risen from Jimmy Carter through George W. Bush. Though the increase is not linear, presidents clearly attend more fundraisers outside of the Washington, DC area than they used to. After Carter traveled to 73 fundraisers in his four years in office, Reagan’s totals for each term were lower, at 59 and 57 events for his first and second terms. Both Bushes checked in with 103 and 116 fundraisers, respectively, while Clinton attended just 77 his first term, before his total jumped to 278 in his second term. Doherty 5

Authors: Doherty, Brendan.
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suburbs of Washington, DC that are only a few miles from the White House and aren’t
comparable to other types of presidential travel.
Events at presidential homes that serve a second White House were not coded.
As presidents often met with foreign leaders there or conducted other affairs of state,
events there seem best categorized as an extension of their Washington activity. Thus,
events for Ronald Reagan at his ranch, Rancho del Cielo, in California, events for George
H.W. Bush in Kennebunkport, Maine, and events for George W. Bush in Crawford,
Texas are excluded. For Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton, who did not have homes that
served as a second White House, brief exchanges with reporters that were not part of
public events in Plains, Georgia and Little Rock, Arkansas, respectively, were not coded
as public events for this study.
Patterns of Presidential Travel for Fundraising
How have patterns of presidential travel for fundraising varied both within terms
and over time? As Table 1 illustrates, overall levels of fundraisers attended have risen
from Jimmy Carter through George W. Bush. Though the increase is not linear,
presidents clearly attend more fundraisers outside of the Washington, DC area than they
used to. After Carter traveled to 73 fundraisers in his four years in office, Reagan’s totals
for each term were lower, at 59 and 57 events for his first and second terms. Both Bushes
checked in with 103 and 116 fundraisers, respectively, while Clinton attended just 77 his
first term, before his total jumped to 278 in his second term.



Doherty
5


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