Obama in Re-election Fundraising Push; Republicans Look to Next Contests

Posted March 16th, 2012 at 10:40 am (UTC-5)
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U.S. President Barack Obama is focusing on his re-election campaign Friday with high-priced fundraisers, while Republicans who hope to unseat him are looking ahead to the next party nominating contests.

Mr. Obama is attending five fundraising events in two U.S. cities — two in his hometown of Chicago, Illinois, and three in Atlanta, Georgia.

In Atlanta, his campaign's African American Leadership Council is teaming up with film producer Tyler Perry for a gala at Perry's studio featuring a performance by Grammy-winning singer Cee Lo Green. General admission costs $500, while VIP tickets range from $2,500 to $10,000. Later, a dinner at Perry's home will raise $35,800 per guest — the combined maximum an individual can contribute per year to a candidate and national party committee under Federal Election Commission rules.

On Thursday, the president's campaign released a 17-minute video on his first term in office. The film includes interviews with former President Bill Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden and the president himself, and highlights Mr. Obama's challenges and accomplishments. Republicans have dismissed the film, “The Road We've Traveled,'' as propaganda.

Mr. Obama's Republican rivals on Friday are looking to win over voters ahead of several nominating contests. Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney was holding an event Friday morning in Illinois, ahead of the state's primary on Tuesday. He also travels to the U.S. territory of Puerto Rico, which holds its caucuses on Sunday.

Former U.S. senator Rick Santorum campaigned earlier this week in Puerto Rico, sparking outrage when he said Puerto Ricans would have to speak English for the territory to become a state. There is currently no U.S. law making English the nation's official language.

On Friday, Santorum was turning his attention to Missouri, and later holding several rallies in Illinois. Missouri has its caucuses Saturday.

Former House of Representatives speaker Newt Gingrich is campaigning Friday in Louisiana, which has its primary on March 24, while U.S. Representative Ron Paul has no events scheduled.