Tonight, Sen. Jon Tester will be dining alongside fellow Democratic senate candidates Bob Kerrey and Heidi Heitkamp at the San Francisco home of California Sen. Dianne Feinstein. Heitkamp is seeking to replace retiring North Dakota Sen. Kent Conrad; Kerrey, a past senator for Nebraska, is running to retake his former seat.
According to an invite posted online by the San Francisco Chronicle, the reception benefits the Heartland Victory Fund, a joint fundraising committee tied to a number of at-risk Democratic senate seats in the Midwest. Tickets to the event cost $15,000 per individual or $35,800 per couple. The invite states that individuals can contribute "as much as $53,300" to the Heartland Victory Fund; couples can donate "as much as $106,600."
The invite (pdf below) also says the first $5,000 from each donation will be split evenly among the various senate hopefuls tied to the Heartland Victory Fund—Tester, Feinstein, Kerrey, Heitkamp and incumbent Sen. Claire McCaskill of Missouri (who will not be in attendance). From there, "the next $30,800 of each contribution from a person and the next $15,000 of each contribution from a multicandidate committee will be allocated to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Inc."
The DSCC has poured millions into numerous Democratic causes nationwide in 2012. And early last month Politico reported that the DSCC had purchased $3 million worth of state broadcast time in Montana for the race between Tester and Republican challenger Rep. Denny Rehberg. That ad buy matched a similar $2.9 million broadcast purchase by the National Republican Senatorial Committee.