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The S.B.F. PAC Pickle, a New DeSantis, & Pompeo’s Doc Fetish

Mike Pompeo, former secretary of state.
Mike Pompeo, former secretary of state. Photo: Joshua Roberts/Getty Images
Tara Palmeri
January 26, 2023

It’s become increasingly clear, after a midterm miracle, that Joe Biden is running for re-election, document controversy be damned. It’s a momentous decision that has set in motion countless other political dominoes, including the process of designating a super PAC of choice to bundle the donations and distribute the proceeds.

Becoming the anointed super PAC of a sitting president seeking re-election is a crowning achievement in political donor circles—there are millions and millions in fees to be made, after all. And as my colleague Teddy Schleifer and I first reported back in October, it seemed a tectonic changing of the guard was in store. Future Forward, the newish group backed heavily by Silicon Valley, appeared to be outpacing Priorities USA, the venerable Obama/Clinton-era PAC, which some in Biden’s inner circle believe is past its prime. The dynamic seemed to evidence the manifest destiny of Democratic fundraising, from D.C. to California, and of the desire among certain Washington insiders to make their mark on a more nimble operation. It also bore the fingerprints of Anita Dunn, Biden’s Zelig-like aide who has done consulting for the PAC in the past. (A source close to Bidenworld disputed that Dunn or White House deputy chief of staff Jen O’Malley Dillon, who is close to Priorities founder Guy Cecil, have charted out their preferred PACs.)