NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — President Barack Obama and former President Bill Clinton were in town Monday, raising some serious money for the Obama re-election campaign while creating some serious traffic gridlock in the process.
Obama campaign bundler and billionaire investor Marc Lasry held an exclusive reception, followed by a gala at the Waldorf-Astoria hotel. The evening concluded with an event dubbed “Barack on Broadway” at the New Amsterdam Theatre.
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Obama will return to Manhattan next week for a fundraiser at the home of “Sex and the City” actress Sarah Jessica Parker.
About 50 people attended the $40,000-per-ticket reception at Lasry’s home. Tickets to a 500-person gala at the Waldorf-Astoria began at $2,500. Those who contribute $35,800 or raise $100,000 get access to a smaller reception with Obama.
Three winners of an online ticket contest were attending both the gala and concert and were expected to meet Obama and Clinton.
Clinton and Obama were focusing their message Monday on economic opportunity. Polls show that economic trends are likely to determine the election, a development that could help Romney if the economy sags significantly. Obama and Romney were tied at 46 percent in Gallup polling last week of national election preferences.
Speaking at one of three fundraisers, Clinton warned that a Mitt Romney presidency would be “calamitous” for the nation and the world, going further than even Obama in depicting the consequences of a return to Republican rule of the White House.
Clinton’s take came as he helped raise at least $3.6 million for Obama.
While Obama was in New York, Romney was on the West Coast to attend fundraisers in Portland, Ore., and Seattle.
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