President Trump visits Orange County for private fundraiser in Newport Beach

Leanne Suter Image
Monday, October 19, 2020
President Trump visits Orange County for fundraiser
President Trump visited Orange County Sunday to attend a private fundraiser at tech mogul Palmer Luckey's estate in Newport Beach.

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif, (KABC) -- President Donald Trump made a short visit to Orange County Sunday to attend a private fundraiser at tech mogul Palmer Luckey's estate in Newport Beach.

Upon landing at John Wayne Airport shortly after 11:30 a.m., Trump was greeted by a few dozen cheering supporters who chanted "Four more years!" and seized the opportunity to snap a photo with the president.

The president's motorcade drew huge cheers as he passed by and thousands of supporters turned out.

The motorcade arrived at the fundraiser location at 12:11 p.m. and left at 1:46 p.m. Air Force One departed from John Wayne Airport bound for Reno, Nevada at 2:15 p.m. after landing at 11:36 a.m.

"THANK YOU Newport Beach, California! Now on my way to Carson City, Nevada," the president tweeted. "Another big crowd, see you soon!"

The president's visit comes as latest fundraising numbers show the president falling behind former Vice President Joe Biden in campaign cash, according to The Orange County Register.

Biden reportedly raised a record-breaking $383 million in September to Trump's $247.8 million. And Biden reported $432 million in cash heading into October vs. Trump's $251 million.

Invitations for Sunday's fundraiser at Luckey's Newport Beach home show tickets ranging from $2,800 for an individual admission to $150,000 for a couple to attend and take a photo with the president, according to the Register. Ric Grenell, Trump's former acting Director of National Intelligence, is also slated to be a special guest at the event.

The event was originally slated to take place Oct. 6 but was postponed after Trump contracted COVID-19 a few days before the trip. The president says he no longer feels ill and his doctors have cleared him for public appearances. But some experts have expressed concern about him holding in-person events less than two weeks after he was released from the hospital, and they continue to discourage any large public gatherings.

Luckey has donated $405,600 to Trump's campaign this cycle, according to Federal Election Commission records. And he's donated more than $1.7 million total this cycle, with much of the rest of those funds going to GOP committees and Republicans running for seats, such as Michelle Steel and Young Kim, who are both trying to unseat Democratic members of Congress.

Luckey is a Long Beach native who was 19 when he co-founded the Oculus Rift virtual-reality system in Irvine. His company sold for an estimated $3 billion to Facebook in 2014.

City News Service contributed to this report.