CBS secretly films GOP fundraiser

CBS News secretly filmed GOP freshman lawmakers who were at a high-price fundraiser at a South Florida island resort, giving a backdoor look into campaign fundraising rarely seen by constituents.

The segment, which aired Friday morning, featured footage of a recent Republican fundraiser for freshman congressmen at the Ocean Reef Club in Key Largo, Fla., organized by the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC).


CBS described the fundraiser as a way to woo "special interest lobbyists" and noted attendees paid a ticket price of at least $10,000.

"Book your Key Largo getaway now," read the invitation sent to campaign donors and lobbyists. Hosting the event were Reps. Spencer Bachus (R-Ala.), NRCC Chairman Pete Sessions (R-Texas) "and 12 of your favorite Republican freshmen!"

Those 12 GOP freshmen were Reps. Sandy Adams (Fla.), Francisco "Quico" Canseco (Texas), Rick Crawford (Ark.), Robert Dold (Ill.), Sean Duffy (Wis.), Stephen Fincher (Tenn.), Mike Fitzpatrick (Pa.), Cory Gardner (Colo.), Michael Grimm (N.Y.), Nan Hayworth (N.Y.), Jim Renacci (Ohio) and Daniel Webster (Fla.).

Donations were split among them, according to the report, which noted the event was "perfectly legal."

The NRCC defended the fundraiser and said it was no different than those held by Democrats. NRCC spokesman Paul Lindsay pointed out that tickets for President Obama's most recent fundraisers went for $35,000.

"I think the public has also seen that President Obama has had many high-level fundraisers throughout the country in cities like New York and Los Angeles," Lindsay said in the video. "Unless you can guarantee me that President Obama and Nancy Pelosi and Democrat super-PACs are gonna unilaterally disarm and not spend any money against Republican candidates in the fall, we are gonna do everything we can to have the resources necessary to compete."