Obama goes abroad to solicit campaign donations
President counting on Americans living in England, France and elsewhere for needed funds
U.S. President Barack Obama is canvassing the globe for Americans living abroad in order to drum up campaign funds for the 2012 presidential election. Some of the president's biggest supporters reside in London, where high-powered execs like Warner Bros. U.K. chief Josh Berger and Anthony Gardner of Palamon Capital Partners have promised to deliver as much as $500,000 each to the campaign. In addition, Robert Roche in Shanghai has also pledged half-a-million dollars.
President Barack Obama's campaign has become more reliant on Americans living abroad now more than ever.
Events like a George Clooney-headlined fundraiser in Geneva, Switzerland have raked in millions. Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) took in $610,000. And in 2004, presidential campaigns took in just under $910,000 total from Americans living abroad.
"You've got to do it because it's money you need, but it's the same as a fundraiser in a small town in America," Jack Oliver, credited with President George W. Bush's strategy in 2000 and 2004 of holding fundraisers abroad. "It's not a game changer in resources, but it is money you don't want [to] leave on the table."
Obama had received more than $455,000 in political contributions outside the 50 states earlier this month, according to Federal Election Commission records.
Mitt Romney has not remained idle. The Romney camp received almost $144,000 in campaign contributions outside the 50 states, according to FEC records. Several Romney supporters said he's expected to attend a fundraiser in London when he travels there for the Olympics this summer.
The former Massachusetts governor attended a $2,500-per-person fundraiser in London last July. The vent was hosted by high-powered donors like hedge fund manager Louis Bacon and New York Jets owner Woody Johnson. Bain Capital Executive Dwight Poler with Bain Capital, the firm Romney previously worked for, and Raj Bhattacharyya, managing director at Deutsche Bank, also co-hosted the event.
Campaign and senior White House officials are expected to build up their frequent flier miles before Election Day.
"He has a world perspective that I think is important in today's interconnected age to ensure the U.S. stays in the lead," Vicki Hansen, the Luxembourg-based international vice chairwoman of Democrats Abroad, an arm of the Democratic Party said. "We can't work in isolation or with blinkers on."
Americans living in Paris also hosted a Gershwin tribute concert earlier this month, and London-based expats organized a "Baroque Obama" musical fundraiser in April.
© 2012, Catholic Online. Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM.
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
Keywords: President Obama, campaigning, fundraising, expatriates
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