Gay-Owned Club Hosting $35,000/Couple Fundraiser For Mike Pence And The Republican Party

A gay-owned private club in Aspen, Colorado is set to host a $35,000-per-couple VIP fundraising event for Vice President Mike Pence Monday evening, reports Newsweek.

The Caribou Club in Aspen, Colorado, which is owned by Billy Stolz and Richard Edwards, will reportedly host about 25 couples at the VIP-only reception.

The $35,000-per-couple price tag will be split between The Donald Trump campaign, which will receive $2700 from that money, with the rest going to the Republican National Committee.

The last time Pence visited Aspen in December 2017, local residents and gay rights advocates displayed a rainbow-themed “Make America Gay Again” banner outside the home where he was staying.

Newsweek notes:

Bob Jenkins, the vice chair of Pitkin County Republicans, floated four different locations for the event to the Aspen Times reporter, but the chef at the Caribou Club told a judge Friday during an advisement hearing for a domestic dispute that he needed to be free from jail in order to cook for the Vice President. Pitkin County Republicans received an invitation earlier this week which also sought to keep the exact location of the reception a secret. The club is owned by two gay men, one of whom is Billy Stolz, who declined to make comments about the event.

“This event is an intimate high dollar reception, and we would like you to participate if possible,” the invitation to Republicans reads. “Additionally, please quietly spread the word. Additional details will be provided upon RSVP.”

Jenkins dismissed the notion that the former Indiana governor’s backing of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act or other anti-LGBT legislation would have any impact on him attending a fundraiser at the gay-owned Caribou Club.

“[Pence’s controversial anti-gay stance] doesn’t affect whether we’re at the Caribou Club or we’re not at the Caribou Club,” he told the newspaper, continuing to withhold the event’s exact location. “What’s that got to do with anything?”

Citing “security” and taxpayer concerns, the county GOP leader explained why he won’t confirm the event will be held Monday at the club. He said security costs may be between $10,000 and $20,000.

“If people know, there will be protests,” Jenkins told the Aspen Times Sunday. “It increases security (demands) drastically. Why do we Republicans want to create extra costs for the city of Aspen?”


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