Even his stance on online privacy can't keep Hollywood from loving Barack Obama
HOLLYWOOD’S love affair with President Barack Obama appears as strong as ever as he arrives in Los Angeles for a series of fund-raising events.
Local Democrats reported that donations to the President's re-election campaign remain high, despite predictions last month that his failure to support a crackdown on online piracy would result in a boycott.
Mr Obama will tonight attend a sell-out reception co-hosted by the actor Will Ferrell at the home of Bradley Bell, a soap opera producer, with guests paying between $250 (€192) and $500 (€384) to brush shoulders with the President and hear an acoustic performance by the Foo Fighters.
The reception will be followed by a small private dinner with a price tag of $35,800 (€27,000) a head. The two events are expected to raise more than $3 million (€2.3 million) for the Obama campaign and the Democratic National Committee.
Ken Solomon, co-chairman of President Obama's Southern California fundraising committee, said the reception had sold out faster than any other fundraiser in the last few years.
It follows a fundraising visit to Los Angeles by Michelle Obama, the First Lady, two weeks ago, which raised more than $1 million (€760,000) from two sell-out events.
John Emerson, another co-chairman, said that Hollywood donors were more interested in the big political issues facing the country, than narrow topics such as online piracy.
He went on: "Hollywood money for the most part is actually quite pure. It's given by people who really believe in the issues. They're not writing the checks because they're after some regulatory change."
Overall, Democrat fundraisers working in the fields of film, television and music around raised $4.75 million (€3.6m) last year, compared to $3.7 million (€2.8m) in the run-up to the 2008 election. They include Ari Emmanuel, the talent agent whose brother Rahm is a former chief of staff at the White House, who brought in between $100,000 (€768,000) and $200,000 (€153,000).
During his two-day campaign visit to California, President Obama will visit Los Angeles and San Francisco, focusing on fundraising in Hollywood and Silicon Valley.