Biden fundraiser protest

Hundreds of people gather in front of Radio City Music Hall to protest President Joe Biden's support for Israel in New York City on March 28, 2024.

(Photo: Selcuk Acar/Anadolu via Getty Images)

'Blood Is on Your Hands!' Activists Disrupt $26 Million Biden Fundraiser

"We will continue to raise our voices of dissent until Palestinians are free," said one activist with Jewish Voice for Peace.

Palestinian youth and descendants of Holocaust survivors were among those who protested a record-breaking fundraiser for President Joe Biden's reelection campaign at New York City's Radio City Music Hall late Thursday, repeatedly interrupting the glitzy event with shouts of opposition to Israel's U.S.-backed war on Gaza.

"You are all complicit in genocide!" one activist yelled as security escorted her from the venue. As Biden spoke, another demonstrator shouted: "Palestinians are dying because of your actions... Blood is on your hands!"

The president said during his remarks that there have been "too many innocent victims, Israeli and Palestinian."

"It's understandable Israel has such a profound anger and Hamas is still there," Biden said. "But we must, in fact, stop the effort that is resulting in significant deaths of innocent civilians, particularly children."

The disruption was organized by Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP), the Palestinian Youth Movement, and other advocacy groups. JVP said some ticketholders were denied entry to the fundraiser. In recent weeks, the Biden campaign has worked to shield the president from Gaza-related protests by holding smaller rallies and carefully vetting attendees.

"We refused to be silenced," Jay Saper of JVP said Thursday. "We will continue to raise our voices of dissent until Palestinians are free."

In a statement late Thursday, the Biden campaign didn't acknowledge the protests, calling the gathering of celebrities and high-profile Democratic figures—including former Presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama—"the most successful political fundraising event in the history of American politics."

The event raised a staggering $26 million for the incumbent president's reelection bid against presumptive GOP nominee Donald Trump, Biden's campaign said. Ticket prices ranged from $225 to $500,000.

"More money got donors more intimate time with the presidents," according toThe Associated Press. "A photo with all three was $100,000. A donation of $250,000 earned donors access to one reception, and $500,000 got them into an even more exclusive gathering."

Outside the venue, Palestinian rights advocates marched in the streets to condemn Biden's unwavering support for Israel's military as it massacres and starves Gazans.

"Joe Biden has been enabling the genocide," Jacob Sierra, a 27-year-old protest attendee, toldThe New York Times. Sierra said he is a registered Democrat and voted for Biden in 2020.

A Gallup poll released earlier this week showed that an overwhelming majority of Democratic voters, including young people and other key elements of the Democratic base, oppose Israel's military assault on the Gaza Strip. The survey found that just 18% of Democratic voters currently approve of Israel's war, down from 36% in November.

Widespread outrage over Biden's diplomatic and military support for Israel's assault has sparked mounting concerns among some Democratic donors and activists.

Last week, more than 100 of them signed a letter warning that "because of the disillusionment of a critical portion of the Democratic coalition, the Gaza war is increasing the chances of a Trump victory."

"We are asking the Biden administration immediately to change course," the party donors and activists wrote. "Conditions need to be placed and monitored on any further military, financial, or diplomatic aid. All indiscriminate bombing and demolition must stop."

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