2020 Elections

Investor and Democratic megadonor Alan Patricof decides to back Joe Biden for president

Key Points
  • Millionaire venture capitalist Alan Patricof is going to back Joe Biden in the 2020 election and help him with fundraising.
  • Patricof tells CNBC he's looking to host events for the former vice president this fall.
  • He met with Biden over the past few weeks to discuss his campaign before he made his decision.
Joe Biden, former U.S. vice president and Democratic presidential hopeful, smiles while signing autographs at the Polk County Democrats' Steak Fry in Des Moines, Iowa, September 21, 2019.
Elijah Nouvelage | Reuters

Democratic megadonor and longtime investor Alan Patricof has decided to back former Vice President Joe Biden's 2020 campaign for president.

Patricof, in an interview Tuesday with CNBC, explained that after meeting and watching most of the candidates, he recently decided that he wanted to start fundraising for Biden.

"Besides being the most qualified, he also has the best chance of winning," Patricof said. "He has very broad support and has the ability to work across the aisle."

Patricof said he made his decision after meeting with Biden in recent weeks. He hopes to start holding fundraising events for Biden later this fall.

Patricof's support is a big boost for the former vice president heading into the fourth quarter, which will likely decide if the candidates have enough resources to survive deep into the primary season. Biden finished the second quarter raising $21.5 million.

Biden has held on to his lead in key state and national Democratic primary polls, but Sen. Elizabeth Warren has been closing the gap in recent weeks. Warren, along with fellow top-tier candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, has shunned the support of wealthy donors and bundlers such as Patricof.

Patricof, the founder and managing director of venture capitalist firm Greycroft, and his wife, Susan, bundled at least $100,000 for Hillary Clinton when she ran for president in 2016, according to the nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics. He also has ties to President Barack Obama's administration, as he was a member of the administration's Global Development Council.

During the 2018 congressional midterm campaign, Patricof was a key member of the House Victory Project, a group of wealthy financiers who helped drive the money machine behind the Democrats' victorious effort to take back the House. Blair Effron, co-founder of investment firm Centerview Partners, was one of the donors involved with the organization, but he has opened his network to Sen. Kamala Harris, D-Calif.

A spokesman for the Biden campaign did not respond to a request for comment.

With Patricof's backing, Biden is also gaining a fundraising ally who has been a vocal critic of the current commander in chief.

In the buildup to last year's election, the wealthy business executive critiqued Trump and the Republican Congress at the time for overturning parts of the Dodd-Frank Act and other efforts to dismantle Obama's legacy.

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