Yesterday, August 25, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump was supposed to appear in Denver in order to deliver what was touted as a major speech on immigration.
That event was eventually canceled with little advance notice — a move Trump critics such as MSNBC's Rachel Maddow seized upon as another indication of campaign disarray.
But The Donald found time to visit Colorado on Thursday anyhow — to collect money during an Aspen fundraiser staged at a spectacular mansion known as Mountain Song.
The residence was featured in a 2014 auction brochure for the Houston Symphony Orchestra, with bidders informed that a weeklong stay at the spread was valued at $150,000; the starting bid was $50,000. The description that follows the photo seen at the top of this post reads in part:
Enjoy a one-week mountain getaway at Mountain Song, a custom-designed, seven bedroom and ten-bathroom estate in Aspen, Colorado. This exquisite ski-in/ski-out chateau is perched high atop Buttermilk Mountain and provides sweeping views of Red Mountain, downtown Aspen, and Aspen Mountain. You and your guests will be immersed in Mountain Song’s luxurious features, which include one of the most significant art collections in Aspen: monumental 16th and 17th century tapestries, fine Oriental rugs and carpets as well as a collection of arms and armor from the battlefields of medieval Europe; a state of the art gym; billiard room; home theater with seating for 15 in addition to multiple outdoor hot tubs and fire pits for relaxing while enjoying the beautiful landscape.
The information about Mountain Song on the Pitkin County assessor's website is more straight-forward. The site reveals that the property was purchased in April 2009 for $12 million by Mountain Song LLC. The Aspen Daily News notes that Mountain Song LLC is a financial instrument of Andrew Bosarge, a securities trader based in Houston whose previous political donations were fairly mainstream; in 2012, he gave generously, if not excessively, to the war chest of GOP nominee Mitt Romney.
Included in the assessor's information about the parcel are photos like this one....
and some basic property descriptions:
FINISHED BSMT: 3,979
FIRST FLOOR: 7,810
FINISHED GARAGE HEATED: 1,024
WOOD BALCONY: 56
STONE PATIO: 1,436
2ND FLOOR: 1,755
Total Heated Area: 13,544
Property Class: SINGLE FAM RES-IMPROVEMEN
Actual Year Built: 2007
Effective Year Built: 2009
Last Remodel: 2010
Quality of Construction: SUPERIOR
Exterior Wall: WOOD SD GO
Exterior Wall: STONE VEN
Interior Wall: PLASTER
Interior Wall: WALL BD/WD
Floor: CUT STONE
Heat Type: RAD WATER
Heating Fuel: GAS
Roof Cover: WD SHINGLE
Roof Structure: GABLE/HIP
Neighborhood: BUTTERMILK AREAS
Super Nbhd: WEST ASPEN
A 2009 Aspen Times piece about the sale reveals that Bosarge got quite a bargain. The amount paid by Mountain Song LLC was less than half of the $26 million asking price — and if the deal hadn't been struck, the joint was headed to a foreclosure auction.
Shuttles that took attendees to the home, which is located on Buttermilk Mountain, were labeled "Bosarge event," and the reported cost to attend the shindig ranged from $2,700 a plate to $25,000 for a couple to experience a VIP meeting with Trump.
Nevertheless, Trump kept these folks waiting. The event was scheduled to get under way at 4:30 p.m., but he didn't even show up at the airport until 7 p.m.
We don't know what he discussed once he finally arrived, since it was private. The get-together was less about policy than about collecting money — and because it sold out, it was presumably a success on that count.
As for those who would have preferred an immigration speech in Denver, well, that's the way business works sometimes.
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Here's a portion of a Rachel Maddow program from earlier this week about the cancellation of the Denver immigration address — and the naming of a twelve-year-old as co-chairman of Trump's campaign in Jefferson County.