Republican presidential candidates Mitt Romney and Rick Perry are holding dueling D.C. fundraisers this week ahead of the all-important third-quarter fundraising deadline on Friday -- a fact greeted with little more than an indifferent shrug by much of Washington's donor class.Despite the money race's enormous political implications, there are more fence-sitters now than in any presidential election in recent memory. Big K Street names like Charlie Black, Ed Rogers, and former Reps. Bill Paxon and Tom Reynolds remain on the sidelines, along with plenty of lower-tier lobbyists and operatives, according to a number of senior Republican donors and fundraisers. ...More than ideology and charisma, power players are sitting on their wallets because Washington is not an altruistic town. They want to back a winner."I want to know who the strongest possible nominee will be to win in November 2012," said Reynolds, the former congressman-turned-lobbyist, who has yet to back a candidate. "There's plenty of time to get involved." ...On Tuesday afternoon, Perry is holding his Washington kickoff fundraiser at the swanky Willard hotel, followed by another event at the home of Republican power couple Mary and Mandell Ourisman. On Thursday, Romney is scheduled to hold a fundraiser in Bethesda hosted by Bill, Donna, Dick, and Nancy Marriott, of hotel-chain fame. ...
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