Cash-Poor Dems Go High-Class to Raise Cash

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Spitzer on election night, which didn't come cheap. Photo: Getty Images


Last fall's Democratic takeover of Albany has the party feeling a bit strapped: Records show the state Democratic Party was down to its last $40,000 in December. Now it's hoping to bolster that balance — while striving for chicness. The New York State Democratic Committee's new (and younger) leadership will hold its ambitiously priced first gala on Thursday at Boylan Daylight Studios in Chelsea: $500 gets you in the door; $10,000 gets you "chair" status; $25,000 gets you into a private reception with Eliot Spitzer.

No more cocktails at the Sheraton for this crew, apparently. "With a cool venue, a hip crowd, and a superstar governor, we're reaching out to untapped fund-raising sources," says Dave Pollak, 42, who, along with June O'Neill, 60, replaced Denny Farrell, 75, as party co-chairs after Spitzer became governor. Pollack, a former investment banker, has also been taking in $10,000 membership fees for a new business-friendly Democratic Party networking round table; the first meeting was at the swanky Core Club. "There's all these young people wanting to use their economic capital to flex muscles politically," he says. "Ten years ago they were in graduate school. Now they're writing $5,000, $10,000 checks." —Geoffrey Gray