Paul Scott, an electric car advocate, paid more than $32,000 for a chance to meet President Obama at a fundraiser in Santa Monica Friday. However, Scott said he was told not to attend after he published plans to promote his anti-oil agenda to the president. Angie Crouch reports from Santa Monica for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on June 6, 2013.
An electric car advocate dug into his retirement fund to pay thousands of dollars for a chance to meet President Obama at a Santa Monica fundraiser Friday, only, he said, to be told he was not welcome.
Paul Scott sent a check for $32,400 to the Democratic National Committee a few months ago so he could attend the fundraiser, which will be held at a private Santa Monica home.
In an email, the DNC told Scott he would be allowed to take a photo with the president and talk to him about anything he wanted in an off-the-record conversation.
Scott makes $50,000 a year selling electric cars in Downtown Los Angeles. He said he needed to tap into his retirement fund for the chance to share his passion for electric energy with Obama.
"I decided it was a lot of money, but it was also an opportunity to get in front of the president, and it was worth it to me," Scott said.
But after Scott wrote an op-ed piece that was picked up by USA Today saying he planned to promote an anti-oil agenda during his conversation with the president, the car salesman said he received an email from the DNC disinviting him from the event.
"We wish to inform you we will be returning your donation," the e-mail read.
Scott believes he was well within his rights to tell the public what he planned to talk to the president about, and he's disappointed he won't get a face-to-face meeting.
"It was very disappointing," Scott said. "At the same time, I understand where they're coming from."
NBC4 reached out to the Democratic National Committee Thursday but did not get a response.
Scott now plans to join environmental activists for a protest outside Friday's fundraiser.