Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez plans to hold party fundraising events with the American expatriate community in Mexico City next month.
Perez will participate in three events in the Mexican capital on Sept. 28, according to invitations obtained by Bloomberg News. The events range from happy hour drinks with a $25 minimum student entry to a dinner where tickets range from $1,000 to $15,000.
The registration form on the DNC website require that attendees be U.S. citizens or permanent residents and enter passport or green card numbers. It is illegal for foreigners to contribute to American political campaigns. Evidence of Russian interference in the 2016 election aimed at benefiting Donald Trump has been a persistent drag on his presidency.
DNC spokeswoman Xochitl Hinojosa confirmed that Perez will be holding the events.
Trump has singled out Mexico since the day he launched his first presidential campaign in 2015, suggesting Mexico was "sending" criminals and rapists among immigrants and demanding that the nation pay for a border wall. In May, he threatened to impose tariffs unless Mexico did more to stop people arriving from Central America.
Trump also says that undocumented immigrants in the U.S. vote in large numbers despite no evidence.
A significant audience awaits Perez south of the border. About 1.5 million American citizens call Mexico home, according to the State Department, more than anywhere else outside the U.S. That’s also larger than the total populations of about one fifth of U.S. states, including New Hampshire and Montana.
The DNC has lagged its Republican counterpart in fundraising this year, having spent more money than it took in during some months, a gap that has raised questions about how influential the organization will be in the run-up to the 2020 election.
Mexican-Americans may turn out to be an important demographic group in next year's presidential election. There were an estimated 37 million people of Mexican origin in the U.S. in 2016, or about 11% of the population, according to the Census Bureau.
It isn't Perez's first time speaking to Democrats Abroad, the party's support group outside the U.S. He also spoke at an event in London in April 2018.
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