Trump Headlines Big-Dollar Fund-Raiser for National G.O.P.

The exclusive conversation took place at New York’s Le Cirque restaurant, which lists escargot vol-au-vent, octopus salvatore and paupiette of black cod on its dinner menu and served as the evening’s venue for Mr. Trump to raise money for the Republican National Committee.

Couples who pay $250,000 got the private face time with the president, while donors who contributed $100,000 each enjoyed “V.I.P. access” to Mr. Trump, Republican officials said. The minimum contribution for the event was set at $35,000.

The president is helping the Republican Party raise money ahead of the 2018 congressional midterm elections, even as he has already set up the apparatus to mount his own re-election campaign in 2020. Since taking office, Mr. Trump has held fund-raisers and rallies in several states around the country.

The fund-raiser is expected to draw some of Mr. Trump’s most wealthy supporters from New York’s finance and real estate worlds. As a presidential candidate, Mr. Trump turned to many of the same people to finance his campaign.

Attending the fund-raiser were Mr. Trump’s two grown sons, Donald Jr. and Eric Trump, as well as Steve Wynn, the casino executive. Also there, according to participants, were John Catsimatidis, a wealthy New York businessman, Marc Kasowitz, Mr. Trump’s lawyer, and Howard Lorber, a businessman.

The restaurant appears to be a favorite of Mr. Trump’s, though it has fallen on hard times in recent years — its owner filed for bankruptcy protection in March. He held a similar fund-raiser at its 58th Street location during the presidential campaign, and it has also played host to other candidates and celebrities throughout the years.

But despite the presidential endorsement on Tuesday night, Le Cirque has struggled to impress food critics.

In that 2012 review, The Times wrote that the restaurant’s most famous dishes, including its chocolate souffle and its steak au poivre, “lacked conviction.” It went on to add: “New dishes lacked rationale. Nearly everything lacked seasoning. The kitchen gave the impression that it had stopped reaching for excellence and possibly no longer remembered what that might mean.”

Continue reading the main storySource: New York Times – Politics

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