President Obama partied with the stars in Beverly Hills on Monday night to raise cash for the Democratic House and Senate campaign committees
The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is off to a running start for 2014, though, raising $4.8 million in October in its best off-cycle month ever and outpacing the National Republican Senatorial Committee by a cool million.
In a tent on the grounds of Magic Johnson’s mansion, the former Lakers star hailed Obama as “the greatest leader in the world.”
With ticket prices between $2,500 and $15,000 a head, the crowed included Samuel L. Jackson and Diane Keaton along with some L.A. Clippers players and members of Congress.
“Magic has become our prime example of somebody who was blessed with incredible fame and fortune from a sports career and understood his next step is to build institutions and businesses, and employ people, and go into communities that folks said weren’t worth anything and suddenly find that they’re worth a whole lot if somebody is willing to invest in them,” Obama said, noting that the two last met on the basketball court for Obama’s 49th birthday “and I just want to tell you it wasn’t pretty.”
Obama said after “hard, tough questions” they know which policies work, and “what’s stopping us is a failure of our politics and a lack of ambition.”
“And we shy away from what might be hard. And our politics all too often encourages people to think selfishly or short term. And that’s what the debate in Washington is about and that’s what the debate in this country generally is about right now,” he said.
At the home of entertainment industry heavyweight Haim Saban (producer of Power Rangers and chairman of Univision), Obama sat down for dinner with people paying $16,200 each.