Socialists Plan to Protest Biden Fundraiser With Amazon Exec

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November 14, 2019

Several socialist groups are planning to protest a pair of fundraisers to be held Friday in Seattle for former vice president Joe Biden.

The Democratic Socialists of America, Transit Riders Union, and climate group Extinction Rebellion, along with several other groups, plan to protest Biden for taking the "middle ground" on a range of issues, including health care, fossil fuels, and national security.

Seattle philanthropist Janet Ketcham will host the first fundraiser, and Amazon general counsel David Zapolsky will host the second. Both events aim to raise $25,000, according to the Seattle Times. The Biden campaign has not listed any public events accompanying this visit to Seattle.

Protest organizers hit the "business-backed" Biden for caving to the interests of his wealthy donors on the event's information page:

Joe Biden oversaw more than 3,000,000 deportations and has funded his campaign through big money donations from corporate executives. Despite signing a pledge not to take fossil fuel money, Biden continues to run private fundraisers with fossil fuel executives while seeking a "middle ground" on climate policy. Like other business-backed candidates, he puts his platform to use working against things like Medicare for All and abolishing ICE. In recent days, his campaign has welcomed a new Super PAC established by corporate lobbyists representing the healthcare, fossil fuel, and defense industries.

Two of Biden's fellow 2020 candidates, Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D., Mass.) and Bernie Sanders (I., Vt.) have waged war on Amazon and other large technology companies, with Warren deriding their CEOs as "freeloading billionaires" and Sanders proposing a "corporate welfare tax" to punish them.

Biden has faced backlash at events in Seattle before. During a fundraiser in June, Biden joked that several years ago, people in Seattle would not have been upset if someone had "made fun of a gay waiter." Audience members responded vocally, telling Biden he was incorrect.