President Obama marks his 23rd fundraiser while in office

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On Tuesday, President Obama holds his 23rd fundraiser while in office--dramatically more than President Bush held during his first nine months in the White House. He faces a difficult political challenge as today's fundraiser will be attended by many of the Wall Street bankers whom the administration has publicly lambasted over bonuses. Unsurprisingly, those bankers are somewhat reluctant to match past donations.

  • Bailed-Out Bankers Should Donate Even More  Huffington Post's David Sirota blasts bankers. "This just about says everything that needs to be said about America's 'greed is good' culture, and the sense of entitlement among the Wall Streeters who destroyed the economy and nonetheless continue making big money off taxpayer bailouts," he writes. "Just to reiterate: Bank executives have been given trillions of taxpayer dollars to double their bonuses and jack up their perks during a recession that they themselves caused - and nonetheless, they not only feel 'put upon,' but feel 'there is no reason why they shouldn't earn $200 million a year.'"
  • Heavy Fundraising Looks Bad  MNSBC's First Read laments the poor visuals. "The Obama White House is in one of the periods many presidencies go through, when no matter what you do, it doesn't seem to play well. Fundraising is one of those issues right now. As we noted yesterday, the president is spending an inordinate amount of time this week campaigning and raising money," they write. "None of it looks good. And last week, he went from touring New Orleans' Katrina areas to a glitzy San Francisco fundraiser. What's more, the president today is raising money in the media's backyard -- New York City -- and he's drawing even more attention to the issue, especially since some Wall Street types are attending today's dual fundraisers for Bill Owens (the Democrat running in NY-23) and for the DNC."
  • More Fundraising Than Bush, Less Money  CBS News' Mark Knoller compares the two president. "The events bring to 22 the # of fund-raisers Pres. Obama has done so far this year. Pres Bush did only 6 fund-raisers his 1st yr in office." Knoller notes that Bush did no 2001 fundraising after 9/11, but later reports that Obama added the 23rd fundraiser today. Surveying the fundraisers for which data is available, Knoller crunches the numbers. "Worth noting: In 2001, Bush raised >$48-million doing six fund-raisers. So far, Obama has raised >$21-million doing 20 fund-raisers."
  • Meanwhile, GOP Rakes In Cash  Greg Sargent blames the health care debate for surging Republican fundraising. "I noted below that the dithering that Obama and Dems are doing on the public option has caused Obama's approval to drop sharply among Dems, raising the possibility that punting on the public option could depress the Dem base’s enthusiasm heading into 2010. In this context, it’s worth pointing out that the GOP base, by contrast, is fired up, judging by this new info just out from the Republican National Committee, which shows that GOP fundraising is up, particularly among small donors," he writes. "Folks aren’t focused enough on the real political dangers punting on the public option poses for Dems."
  • 'Neverending Campaign'  Conservative blog Stop The ACLU slams Obama's "neverending campaign" strategy. "Obama and Biden will be making many fundraising stops in the coming week, and certainly in the future. They have decided on a strategy of using Air Force One to take them to supposed official government stops, then popping off to the rallies, so as not to be nailed for the usage of AF1," they write. "Here’s a novel idea: why not listen to what the people are saying, and pass legislation that will serve their needs and make them happy?"
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.