Gays In Military Group Accosts President At Roosevelt Hotel

NEW YORK (AP) — President Barack Obama got heckled at a fundraiser Wednesday night by protesters pushing for more funding for AIDS programs and quicker action to allow gays to serve openly in the military.

Activists yelled slogans and held signs aloft reading “Obama broken promises KILL.” Supporters of the president tried to drown them out with shouts of “O-bam-a! O-bam-a!”

The hecklers were so raucous Obama went off-script several times to address them, insisting he’s increased AIDS funding and is working to overturn the military’s “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. He told them to go shout at Republicans, noting that a vote on repealing “don’t ask, don’t tell” failed this week in the Senate, with Republicans united in opposition.

“Some of those signs should be going up at the other folks’ events, and folks should be hollering at the other folks’ event. Because the choice in November could not be clearer,” the president said.

Addressing an activist pushing for more funding for global AIDS initiatives, the president said, “We heard your point. And as I said before, we increased AIDS funding. … The people who will take over if we don’t focus on the election, I promise you, will cut AIDS funding.”

The protest took place in the ballroom of the Roosevelt Hotel as Obama raised $1.4 million at receptions and a dinner for the House and Senate Democratic campaign committees. Obama is in New York to attend the annual meeting of the U.N. General Assembly.

Obama had just finished saying it’s “nice just to stop by and see some friends” when the shouting began.

Bystanders briefly tried to snatch the signs, and ultimately the heckling subsided. The signs stayed aloft throughout Obama’s remarks, and even as he shook hands afterward with well-wishers a few feet away.

One of the activists, Jennifer Flynn, told reporters she and the others bought tickets to the reception.

Democrats are anticipating potentially heavy losses in midterm elections six weeks away, and Obama tried to rally them.

“The last election was about the changing of the guard,” he said. “This election is about guarding the change.”

Tickets for the event ranged from $100 for a general reception to $15,200 for a dinner and photo with the president.

At the dinner, singer Barbara Streisand and her actor husband, James Brolin, were among those who heard Obama say Democrats have accomplished “a lot to be proud about.” But he also acknowledged widespread voter frustration.

“When I was running for office … maybe we gave people the wrong impression about how change happens,” Obama said.

But after reviewing for his audience the health care overhaul, his new Wall Street rules and other tough policy battles, Obama said, “People, this is what change looks like.”

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

Comments (31)
  1. Dave Tubb says:

    Hey, at least Obama doesn’t warrant getting a shoe whipped at him, lol. Bush got healed!

  2. ZEKE440 says:

    Hans … the DEMs have controlled congress since 2006 the last 2 years your dreaded Bush was in office … I have come to believe there isnt a DEM out there that knows anything about governing…. or is capable of voting their concience without PARTY LINE like “BUSH DID IT” or “YOUR A RACEIST”….

  3. Hans says:

    Change can’t happen when every Republican is United in voting no to everything Obama tries to change. Why Heckle Obama is right. I mean listen Obama has his flaws and so does everyone. This country will never progress to be anything better in a 2 party system.

    1. teleprompter says:

      Hans, Please, do the math. (or did you go to public school and math is over your head?) With the Democrats holding the majority in the House, the Senate and Obama in the White House, just how do Republicans manage to stop them? They don’t – not by themselves. Obama should have no problems getting his agenda through with the majorities the Democrats enjoy. Your problem isn’t with Republicans – they couldn’t stop a swinging door against the Democrat majorities in the House and Senate. Your problem is with conservative Democrats. So quick blaming the wrong party and point your finger of blame for Obama’s failures at the Democrats and Obama himself. – It’s obvious his agenda isn’t even selling with Democrats these days. Don’t expect the opposition party to do your work.

      1. bnkr0 says:

        ohhhh… so you missed the class about filibusters too? that’s ok. I think they only teach that in public schools.

  4. mikul jaksun says:

    watch the O bm a De sep tion full version movie on u toob

  5. mikul jaksun says:

    I can’t beleive there are only 16 comments on this. Something tells me that this is being censored big time

  6. almack says:

    understand, i am not playing the race game but i am scared like most of you that smarter minorities will take over and i’m not ready for the change but accepting it as a natural evolution of melding races! so should you.

    1. Phillip says:

      Jeez Almack, and you’re accusing those who oppose the Obama agenda of being racist? Re-read your remark and give me a break!

  7. ryannnnn says:

    lolololol dems and reps r both filled with blind fools thats why our founding fathers, such as washington, warned us not to get into party affiliation. reps should go watch the q&a session obama did alone at the republican retreat , he rips them a new one with straight facts, and dems need to except the fact hes not a miriacle worker hes doing no better then a rep president would be doing

  8. 8Gage says:

    Thats all the dems know how to do is play the race card when things dont go their
    way!! LOL

    Osama…………..excuse me, Obama is a one term prez, and the dems know this,
    and they dont know what to do about it.

    It would be funny if it were not so pathetic!

  9. Sheila says:

    I agree with JasonS. Almack, please Do Not play the race card. Obama has not accomplished as much as we expected, because he is not capable, not he is black.

  10. JasonS says:

    Almack: yes, we would hate Obama as much if he were white. Quit with the race card, it’s the last refuge of the desperate.

  11. almack says:

    bibles are books written by men, who knew there were dinosaurs but refused to give-in. scheming for power, sounds republican no?

  12. almack says:

    honestly, would you hate obama as much if he were white?

    1. teleprompter says:

      Yes. In fact he is white — he is as white as he is black. It’s not the person, it’s his policies — but those who continue to label anyone who disagrees with him is racist is not willing to recognize that fact.

  13. Jerry says:

    Could I get my vote back, please.

  14. Alice says:

    I agree with JasonS!

  15. zimbabwe says:

    For pike AT least 50% of the country does vote republican. I know they are all clinging tio their guns and Bibles. But that is what this country was founded with. Guns and Bibles. Believe it or not there were no wellfare, social security, trial lawers and socialist idiots. They founded other countries and successfuly destroyed them. No they want to destroy the one founded on Bibles and Guns. ANd who is going to pay for wellfare then communist China?

  16. JasonS says:

    Obama cannot get heckled enough!

    1. Halle says:

      You are sooooo right about that!

  17. Pike Hemmings says:

    Why would anyone vote for a Republican?

    1. Kathy says:

      Because sarah palin.

  18. lvergara718 says:

    don’t blame the republicans, wasn’t there another catch to that proposal that the democrats sneaked in that had nothing to do with “don’t ask don’t tell policy” I am not a republican but I am pretty sure that an ear mark was included. the anointed one never takes the blame

Leave a Reply