Paul Scott, 60, said he paid $32,400 to be one of the 25 donors who will dine with the president June 7 at a "private, off-the-record" Democratic fundraiser in Santa Monica, Calif.
Scott told USA Today he took the plunge to get some face time with the president and pitch ideas he thinks would help the fledgling electric-car industry.
"I am not going to sit quietly," said Scott, a Nissan salesman who is also co-founder of the electric-vehicle advocacy group Plug In America. "I am not going to hope that I get to talk."
Scott told the newspaper he made certain he would get at least a few minutes of quality time with the chief executive before writing the check.
"I figured what the hell, I'll go tell him to his face," Scott said.
USA Today said Scott planned to lobby the president for changes to the federal rebate and tax-incentives for electric cars and for a carbon tax on fossil fuels that would make electric vehicles more attractive to consumers.