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That free cup of coffee with Joe Biden may cost you hundreds in taxes

That free cup of coffee with Joe Biden may cost you hundreds in taxes

You know the routine from That $3 dinner with Obama may cost you hundreds in taxes.

The Obama campaign lures unsuspecting small donors into entering a contest for a nominal amount (no donation actually required), and only in the fine print discloses the “retail value” of the package.

Nowhere on the website or in the fine print does the Obama campaign alert the participant that he or she may incur several hundred dollars of taxes based on the taxable value of the package.

The latest Obama fundraising mass email is a sweepstakes to have a cup of coffee with Joe Biden.  (h/t LukeHandCool)

From: Joe Biden
To: xxxxxxxxxxx
Sent: Saturday, July 7, 2012 11:48 AM
Subject: A big problem right now

Friend —

Election Day will be here in less than four months. And we’re facing a big problem right now that could directly affect the outcome that day.

The Romney campaign and the Republicans raised $100 million in the month of June alone. That is a massive sum.

Just wait until they start spending all that money in full force in key states we need to win.

Folks, here is the simple reality: Building this campaign today is more important than it was a few days ago. We can still win even while getting outraised by these guys. But we’ve got to keep it close.

That means none of us — not one — can wait to make a difference right now, with whatever we can afford to chip in:

A little incentive: A donation before midnight tonight will also automatically enter you for the chance to sit down with me for a cup of coffee sometime soon. We’ll fly you out, and you can bring a guest.

And really — thanks, for whatever you’re able to give today.


Neither the promo landing page nor the Rules mention a several hundred dollar tax liability for each of two the $1420 packages, broken down as follows:

Round-trip First Class Airfare – $1200
Hotel – $200
Coffee and snacks for winner and guest with Vice President Joe Biden – $20

And as with other sweepstakes, there is a page to enter for free.

You may get a cup of coffee, but there is no promise that it will be a good cup of coffee:

All prizes are awarded “AS IS” and WITHOUT WARRANTY OF ANY KIND, express or implied (including, without limitation, any implied warranty of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose).



Donations tax deductible
to the full extent allowed by law.


Henry Hawkins | July 7, 2012 at 10:14 pm

Question: Would coffee with Joe Biden be a tax or a penalty?

LukeHandCool | July 7, 2012 at 10:56 pm

“And we’re facing a big problem right now …”

Well isn’t that a big effing problem?

Just a couple of everyday Joes having a cuppa Joe with VP Joe.

Well, I took the liberty of entering William “Joe” Jacobson into the sweepstakes contest. Imagine if he wins.

The intimate little coffee of the Joes might see the BFD Joe talking to the Professor Joe something like this:

$3 doesn’t buy much in terms of coffee these days.

SoCA Conservative Mom | July 7, 2012 at 11:03 pm

I’m guessing the cuppa only lasts long enough for the photo op and Joe is outta there. $3 for about 90 seconds of face time.

Samuel Keck | July 7, 2012 at 11:06 pm

Aren’t these kinds of lotteries, held across state lines in this manner, illegal?

Just curious.

Coffee with Joe Biden?

Big f*****g deal.

Yeah, but having a cup of coffee with Crazy Joe might be worth it if you plant a few more embarrassing ideas into his pinhead brain…

Midwest Rhino | July 8, 2012 at 12:50 am

But the Democrat base is a big part of the 50% that don’t pay income taxes … so “no problemo”.

Let me guess. Second place is Two Coffees with Joe Biden.

If a person ends up paying the income taxes for his dinner with Barack or Joe with Joe (my marketing idea), isn’t the amount of his tax bill in effect an in-kind contribution to Obama-Biden? The campaign will use the pictures and video, and we know from baseball that “Any rebroadcast, retransmission, or account” of something must have value.

So shouldn’t their taxes count towards their contribution limits?

But since most of the people affected by this hidden tax will be those supporting Obama, pass the popcorn.

The bad Joe is on us.

He will wind up having to pay us to have coffee with him. I would order my coffee to go.

You’re not patriotic if you don’t have a cup of coffee with Joe Biden.

Henry Hawkins | July 8, 2012 at 12:30 pm

Shameless Plug Alert:

Cup A Joe, 3100 Hillsborough St, Raleigh NC, long time NC State University landmark:

I keep thinking it would be hilarious to sign up for the free one, and send the ticket to Limbaugh, or the like.

    punfundit in reply to Voyager. | July 9, 2012 at 11:46 am

    Rush could then auction the ticket. Money goes to charity; ticket goes to winner’s choice of Joe’s coffee buddy: Justice Clarence Thomas, Dr. Thomas Sowell, or Dr. Walter Williams.

    (You know, clean, articulate black men…)