The smoke-filled room fundraiser returns!

November 5, 2013
Golfer Miguel Angel Jimenez of Spain smokes a cigar during a toyrnament in Portugal.(Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)
Golfer Miguel Angel Jimenez of Spain smokes a cigar while  golfing in  Portugal. (Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

Tired of those political fundraisers that take you for a “fun” time swatting mosquitoes in the Louisiana bayous, hunting alligators or fly-fishing or maybe horseback riding?

Tired of schlepping your golf gear out to Dulles? Long for the good old days in 1920 when real politicians broke a GOP convention deadlock in a smoke-filled room in a Chicago hotel and gave the country none other than President Warren G. Harding?

Then return to yesteryear with House Appropriations Committee Chairman Hal Rogers (R-Ky.) on Nov. 14 as he hosts a “cigars and cocktails” fundraiser for Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart (R-Fla.). Our invite emphasizes that Diaz-Balart is also a member of that all-powerful committee. Best of all, you don’t really have to go anywhere. The event is conveniently located just steps from the House side of the Capitol. The “suggested contribution” is only $2,500 for a “host” and $1,000 to attend.

But don’t expect to be smoking one of those Cuban Behike BHK 52s at the event. Those would of course be illegal under the U.S. trade embargo on Cuban products. Still, maybe they’ll have a fine Flor de las Antillas Toro, made by Cuban emigres, and voted cigar of the year in 2012 by Cigar Aficionado.

For a thousand bucks, surely they’ll have some good smokes.

Al Kamen, an award-winning columnist on the national staff of The Washington Post, created the “In the Loop” column in 1993.
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Emily Heil | November 4, 2013