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State dinner or campaign event?

By Laurie Bennett

June 8, 2011 at 8:49am

The purported reason for the state dinner at the White House Tuesday was to honor German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

But the four-course dinner, held in in the White House Rose Garden, had all the trappings of a high-end campaign fundraiser.

The guest list included the requisite number government officials from the U.S. and Germany, as well as cultural figures such as Christoph Eschenbach, music director of the National Symphony Orchestra, and a few media folks (Diane Sawyer, E.J. Dionne, Gerald Seib of the Wall Street Journal).

But another well-represented group was the list of bundlers from the 2008 Obama campaign.

The Muckety map above shows 14 of the campaign’s prime money people, along with two others (Noah Mamet and former New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine) who raised money for Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Bundlers are valued not only for their personal wealth, but for their extensive networks of wealthy people, which is why we love mapping them.

Among those attending last night were Choice Hotels Chairman Stewart Bainum Jr., Goldman Sachs partner Bruce Heyman, Google Chairman Eric Schmidt and venture capitalist Douglas Hickey.

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