Feb. 13, 2016 SIGN IN | REGISTER

Female Lawmakers Are Raising Money and the Political Stakes

Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call File Photo
Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand impressed Democrats and Republicans with her Sunday appearance on "Meet the Press." She is one of a handful of Democratic women who have been raising money for the party.

An invitation to the San Francisco brunch, obtained by Roll Call, said that the event was paid for by “Women On the Road to the Senate: 12 and Counting,” a joint fundraising committee authorized by the DSCC and the campaigns of McCaskill, Stabenow and Klobuchar, as well as Sens. Dianne Feinstein (Calif.), Kirsten Gillibrand (N.Y.) and Maria Cantwell (Wash.). The campaigns of Warren, Baldwin, North Dakota candidate Heidi Heitkamp and Rep. Shelley Berkley (Nev.) are also part of the fundraising committee.

“With job creation, education, health care, immigration and the environment at stake this election, please join us in supporting the Democratic women who are fighting to preserve these issues,” the invitation read. “Your attendance at this historic event is critical in helping the exceptional women who are running in key races this fall. The event is part of a four-city fly-around sponsored in part by the Women’s Senate Network and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.”

The swing also engaged top-level donors. The San Francisco event alone included honorary co-chairmen Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Apple founder Steve Jobs, and Jack Dorsey, creator of Twitter. The chairmen for the brunch included Susie Tompkins Buell, a key West Coast fundraiser for Hillary Rodham Clinton, and leading Bay Area lawyer Joe Cotchett.

On the messaging front, Senate Democratic sources indicated that Gillibrand is being primed for a larger surrogate role, and she impressed Democrats and Republicans alike with her Sunday appearance on NBC’s “Meet the Press.”

Former Bush administration official and GOP strategist Tony Fratto, for example, tweeted after the New York Democrat’s appearance Sunday: “Whatever your politics, [Gillibrand] is a very effective voice for [Democrats] (& not just on ‘women’s issues’).”

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