Local News

 

Obama In L.A., Day 2

Obama In L.A., Day 2

CHECK TRAFFIC CONDITIONS

LOS ANGELES (CNS) - President Barack Obama continued a two-day trip to  Southern California today, first by attending a high-dollar fundraiser in  Hancock Park then taking a behind-the-scenes tour of DreamWorks Animation,  where he will deliver a speech on the economy.

About 30 supporters attended the morning fundraiser -- the seventh in  Obama's three-day West Coast trip -- at the home of Marta Kauffman, a co- creator of the 1994-2004 NBC comedy ``Friends.'' Attendees paid up to $32,400  each to hear the president talk at the private event.


Obama was then taken by helicopter to Glendale for the visit to DreamWorks.

The president was given a behind-the-scenes look at the DreamWorks  campus, including a demonstration of motion-capture technology being used for  the upcoming film ``How to Train Your Dragon 2.'' He then went to a recording  studio, where he shook hands with actors Steve Martin and Jim Parsons, who were  recording parts for the film ``Home.''

As part of the demonstration, Obama saw a video clip of a purple alien -- with the president's voice -- saying ``Happy Thanksgiving, everybody.  Welcome to the White House.''

``That'll impress the girls,'' Obama said.

The president also watched as Martin and Parsons voiced a scene for the  film.

After his speech at DreamWorks, Obama is scheduled to return to Los  Angeles International Airport for a roughly 1:40 p.m. flight back to  Washington, D.C.

DreamWorks Animation is headed by Jeffrey Katzenberg, who raised  millions for Obama's 2012 re-election campaign and donated $3 million to the  pro-Obama super PAC Priorities USA Action.

``Contributing to the president's campaign doesn't guarantee a  presidential visit, but it shouldn't exclude you from one either,'' principal  deputy press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters aboard Air Force 1 Monday.

Earnest went on to liken visiting a studio in Southern California to  speaking on Wall Street in New York, at an automotive plant in Detroit or a  technology firm in Northern California. He called today's speech ``an  opportunity to highlight the success of one business and the success that  they're having in creating jobs in California,'' part of the effort on the West  Coast trip to ``highlight the breadth of the president's domestic agenda.''

Obama used speeches at two Beverly Hills-area fundraisers Monday night  to defend the much-criticized Affordable Care Act and an agreement on Iran's  nuclear program. He pledged to fight for the remainder of his term to assure  ``that this country provides affordable health care to every single American.''

Speaking for about 20 minutes at a fundraising reception benefiting  Democratic House and Senate campaign committees at the Beverly Park home  Basketball Hall of Fame member Earvin ``Magic'' Johnson, Obama called his  support of the Affordable Care Act ``a values question.''

``Do we want to live in a country as wealthy as we are where if somebody  gets sick they lose their home, they go bankrupt? They have to weigh, can I  go right now to the emergency room knowing that may mean I can't pay for my  child's school tuition?'' Obama told the crowd of about 160 that included  Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and House Minority Leader Nancy  Pelosi, D-San Francisco.

``That's not the country I want to live in and that's not the county you  want to live in, which means we've got to fight for it.''

What Ryan Mahoney, a deputy press secretary of the Republican National  Committee, called a ``fundamentally flawed and unpopular health care law'' has  drawn criticism for problems with its website, the inaccuracy of Obama's  promise that people could keep their insurance policies, and thousands of  people having their insurance policies canceled.

Also attending the reception were actors Samuel L. Jackson and Diane  Keaton and Los Angeles Clippers players J.J. Redick and Antawn Jamison. Tickets  were priced from $2,500 to $15,000 per person.

Obama later spoke for 14 minutes at a dinner at the Beverly Hills-area  home of Saban Capital Group Chairman Haim Saban, an Egyptian-born former  Israeli, focusing on the agreement on Iran's nuclear program.Obama said the agreement's provisions for ``unprecedented inspections,  in some cases daily inspections'' creates ``the prospect that we'll be able to - - through peaceful, diplomatic means -- remove this cloud that has hovered over  the Middle East that had the potential and continues to have the potential of  triggering a nuclear arms race in the most volatile region of the world.''

``That's the right thing to do,'' Obama said. ``It's good for the United  States, it's good for our allies, it's good for Israel.''

Approximately 120 people attended the dinner, including Mayor Eric  Garcetti and Academy Award-winning actor Tom Hanks. Tickets were priced at  $16,200 each.

Both fundraisers benefited the House Senate Victory Fund, a joint  fundraising committee between the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee  and the Democratic Senate Campaign Committee.

The trip is Obama's 16th to the Los Angeles area since taking office.  All but three of his trips have included political fundraisers. He has made 10  trips to the area solely for fundraising.

Before attending the Monday night fundraisers, Obama traveled by  motorcade to The Beverly Hilton where he met with the family of slain  Transportation Security Administration Officer Gerardo Hernandez, the first TSA  agent to die in the line of duty, and TSA Officers Tony Grigsby and James Speer  who were wounded in the Nov. 1 shooting at Los Angeles International Airport,  Earnest said.

 

More Articles