Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton recently hosted a Broadway fundraiser for President Biden in the latest example of Democrats holding star-studded events with large donors, while former President Trump leads in small donor fundraising and frequents less lavish events. It's a contrast that may prove jarring to average voters already souring on Biden, political insiders believe.

Clinton, a two-time failed presidential candidate, joined Hamilton actor Lin-Manuel Miranda last week in Manhattan for a presentation of "Suffs: The Musical," which she co-produced, with tickets priced from $500 to $5,000, according to an invitation reviewed by Fox News Digital. Proceeds from the event supported the Biden Victory Fund and Women’s Leadership Forum.

That event came days after Biden hauled in over $26 million at a fundraising gala with former presidents Obama and Clinton and several celebrities at New York City's famed Radio City Music Hall, a new single event fundraising record at the time.

"It's tone deaf," GOP fundraiser and strategist Noelle Nikpour told Fox News Digital. "It's like when Obama told you you better conserve money while he was spending our nation's money right and left. So, it's like he's trying to convince and all the celebrities are trying to convince and really appeal to their base, saying that we've got to stamp out Donald Trump."


Joe Biden tux

US President Joe Biden speaks as he welcomes Governors and their spouses for a black-tie dinner at the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, DC on February 11, 2023.  (. (Photo by ANDREW CABALLERO-REYNOLDS / AFP) )

"If you've noticed, the reason the argument is that 'We've got to stamp out Donald Trump. We can't have him again. We're going to focus on gender issues or abortion.' They don't really hard press the economy that much because they realize it's not reality," Nikpour continued. "With interest rates the way they're sitting, rent, mortgages, groceries, restaurant costs, going out and having a drink. Everything is high. So, if you notice, they don't really press our economy versus his economy. They're really going back to their old playbook, which is social issues."

The glamorous Biden events stand in contrast with Trump’s recent appearances on the trail.

On the day Biden attended his Radio City Music Hall fundraiser, Trump attended the wake for slain New York City Police Department Officer Jonathan Diller on nearby Long Island. 

The New York Times reported in February that Trump trailed Biden in cash on hand at the end of 2023 but led Biden when it came to small dollar donors who gave less than $200, although Biden did not announce his candidacy officially until April.


Donald Trump, Joe Biden

Former President Trump, left, and President Biden, right (Getty Images)

In August, Vice President Kamala Harris headlined a fundraiser billed as a "grassroots reception" in Martha’s Vineyard, known as a playground for America's rich and famous, with tickets costing $50 to $10,000.

This week, Biden was in Chicago hauling in an expected $2.5 million at a fundraiser hosted by businessman Michael Sacks and his wife, Cari, and political activist Laura Ricketts, a co-owner of the Chicago Cubs, and her wife, Brooke.

The recent high-profile Biden events have led some to conclude that Democrats have shifted their focus from working-class supporters to a more elite crowd over the years.

"I think that the Republican brand overall is changing a little bit," Nikpour said. "While we still have wealthy donors and wealthy people that are attracted to the party, the fact that we're not really seeing the country club party anymore is because so many working men and women are gravitating towards our party because they like what our platform represents, which is low taxes, less regulation, which affect their pocketbooks.


President Joe Biden speaks with members of the media

President Biden speaks with members of the press. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

"So, I think that they're starting to become more educated on, you know, what actually the Republican Party stands for and what we do. So, I think our brand is just changing. Slowly changing."

Colin Reed, a communications strategist and co-founder of South and Hill Strategies, also told Fox News Digital the paradigm between the Republican and Democrat bases have shifted.

"From electric vehicle mandates to college loan bailouts, Joe Biden has strayed a long way from his Scranton roots," Reed told Fox News Digital. 

"Continuing to rub shoulders with high-rolling celebrities only calls more attention to the political realignment that is making the Democratic Party a tough sell for working-class voters."

In a statement to Fox News Digital, Biden campaign spokesperson Sarafina Chitika pushed back on the idea of negative optics being associated with the Biden campaign.

"While Donald Trump hosts billionaires at his country club who want to cut Social Security — and promises them tax giveaways if he wins a second term — President Biden is working to lower prescription drug costs, create jobs and protect women’s freedom. And, unlike Trump, he’s powered by nurses and teachers, not billionaires," Chitika said. 

The Biden Victory Fund has been backed by a long list of Hollywood moguls as well as billionaires including George Soros, Laurene Powell Jobs, the widow of Steve Jobs, casino magnate Neil Bluhm, businessman Haim Saban, Linkedin co-founder Reid Hoffman, and philanthropist Ellen Bronfman Hauptman. 

"If we’re talking about optics, one candidate is praising insurrectionists and comparing himself to Jesus Christ and Nelson Mandela, and the other is laser focused on the issues voters care about this November. The choice is clear." 

Trump raised a whopping $50 million from wealthy financiers and GOP mega donors at a Palm Beach event hosted by John Paulson, which broke Biden's previous record. Trump's event did not incorporate a grassroots component like the Radio City Music hall event, and it took place behind closed doors. 

Nikpour told Fox News Digital voters are more concerned about their daily lives than they are Trump's fundraiser.

"It doesn't matter if John Paulson, who's a multi-billionaire, is hosting an event for Donald Trump," Nikpour said. "The real thing is they're [voters] looking at the issues and really not looking at optics, meaning both, you know, Joe Biden and Donald Trump are having high-end parties. They're looking at when they go home they can't afford groceries or gas and their tanks or even to buy a home or afford rent depending on what area they're in."

Fox News contributor Liz Peek echoed Nikpour and Reed's sentiments in an opinion piece earlier this month.

"The DNC won’t say who actually showed up to help raise more than $26 million," Peek wrote. "Why so coy? Because Democrat apparatchiks pretend that former President Donald Trump is the candidate kowtowing to the monied class; they don’t want the public to know that Biden’s crowd is way more Wall Street than Main Street."

Obama, Bill Clinton, and Biden

Former President Obama, President Biden and former President Clinton (Getty Images)

Peek cited a recent poll showing that only 17% of U.S. adults with incomes below $100,000 hold a "very favorable" view of Joe Biden.   

"Why are lower-income Americans gravitating toward Trump? It’s not because they think he’s more likable; in fact, the same poll shows they don’t. It’s because they think his policies worked better for them. Guess what? They’re correct."

Nikpour told Fox News Digital "Biden is losing that working-class vote sheerly because of issues that people are actually living."

Biden at dinner

President Biden speaks at the annual White House Correspondents' Association dinner April 30, 2022, in Washington.  (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)


The Biden campaign has been the recipient of a massive fundraising haul this year and has double the cash on hand of Trump and hundreds of campaign staffers across nine states, which outpaces the Trump campaign.

The campaign has also touted its grassroots support and says 96% of its donations in the first quarter were under $200 and that March was the fifth consecutive record-breaking month for grassroots fundraising.

The campaign also says more than 165,000 grassroots supporters engaged in the Radio City Music Hall event and that the event generated almost $10 million in grassroots fundraising. 

Despite the significant cash advantage, recent Fox News polling shows Trump leading in six of seven key battleground states.