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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Pinellas Dems in new fundraising territory



$56,000 -- That's the projected gross take from tomorrow's Jefferson-Jackson Day Victory Gala 2008 at the Hilton Carillon in St. Petersburg, said Pinellas County Democratic Party chair Toni Molinaro.

How big a deal is this for local Dems? The last time the party was even able to carry-off a Jefferson-Jackson fundraiser was in 1994, Molinaro said. And the most Molinaro can recall a party event raising in recent memory was a mere $10,000.

She's based her figure on more than 300 guests paying $150 each. The projected total is roughly what the local GOP took in from its January Lincoln Day Dinner after expenses. But for local Democrats, the money is unlike anything they've seen before.

"I think for me it says 'Yes, we can," Molinaro said. "We can be successful. We can play with the big dogs and we can make a difference."

--Will Van Sant, Times staff writer

[Last modified: Wednesday, May 26, 2010 11:30am]


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