President Obama’s Dinner With George Clooney

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George Clooney (Photo: Getty)
President Barack Obama flew to attended a fundraising dinner at the home of actor George Clooney last night in Studio City, California. According to reports filed by the White House press pool, it was a star-studded event that raised almost $15 million for the president’s re-election campaign.

There were 150 supporters at the fundraiser including two women who won an online contest after making small donations online. The rest of the crowd paid $40,000 apiece to attend the dinner, which was held under a tent set up on Mr. Clooney’s outdoor basketball court.

Mr. Clooney said the event was put together with the help of DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg. Other attendees of the dinner included Robert Downey Jr., Jack Black, Salma Hayek, Tobey Maguire, Barbra Streisand (who, according to then pool reportwas “looking serious throughout”), Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Billy Crystal.

President Obama told the crowd he saw one of his famous “HOPE” posters from the 2008 campaign hanging in Mr. Clooney’s house.

“People don’t realize that the photograph of me is actually me sitting next to George,” the president said referring to an event where Mr. Clooney was discussing the situation in Darfur. “This is the first time that George Clooney has actually been photo-shopped out of a picture. Never happened before, will never happen again.”

President Obama concluded his remarks by telling the crowd to expect a tough, close election.

“I will just close by saying this is going to be harder than it was the last time. This is going to be harder than it was last time, not only because I’m older and grayer and your HOPE posters are dog-eared. 2008 in some ways was lightening in a bottle,” he said. “That’s not going to be replicated and we shouldn’t expect it to. I’ve been president for three and a half years but part of the reason it’s going to be harder is because folks are still hurting out there and those frustrations with Washington and with the nonsense they see on the news is making them more cynical than they were in 2008.”

President Obama said he and his supporters would have to fight against this “cynicism and the belief maybe things can’t happen and maybe the game is rigged” to win the election.

“We’re going to have to keep those fires burning all the way through November and beyond because I’m not interesting in just winning the election,” he said. “I’m interested in making sure we can finish what we started in 2008.”

Bloomberg: Stop-and-Frisk Is Supposed to Act As A Deterrent

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(Photo: Getty)

On Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s appearance on John Gambling’s radio show this morning, Mr. Bloomberg defended the NYPD’s controversial stop-and-frisk policies from critics who are pointing to the fact that as the number of stops has increased from 160,000 a year in 2003 to 685,000 last year, the percentage of stops to yield a gun has also dropped off significantly.

“What we do know is that the number of guns that we’ve been finding has continued to go down which says that the program at this scale is doing a great job,” Mr. Bloomberg said when Mr. Gambling asked what the right number of stops is. “The whole idea here John is not to catch people with guns it’s to prevent people from carrying guns.”

Continue reading “Bloomberg: Stop-and-Frisk Is Supposed to Act As A Deterrent”

Morning Read: Bloomberg’s Hopes for Romney; The Case of the Subway Groper; Tanorexic Mom Leads To NY Ban

Mayor Bloomberg on gay marriage: “My hope would be that Gov. Romney also evolves.”

Mike Bloomberg said that stop-and-frisk has stopped 5,600 murders in the last decade, and slammed critics of the policy. 

Mark Green endorsed Julie Menin for Manhattan BP. 

James Sanders is going all-in in his primary against incumbent Democrat Shirley Huntley. 

After the state’s highest court ruled that viewing child porn on the Internet under current state law “is not enough to constitute their procurement or possession, Brooklyn Senator Marty Golden and Brooklyn Assemblymember Joe Lentol quickly moved to make it a felony crime. Continue reading “Morning Read: Bloomberg’s Hopes for Romney; The Case of the Subway Groper; Tanorexic Mom Leads To NY Ban”

Espaillat Endorsed by Peralta

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José Peralta (Photo: Facebook)

Add another Latino voice in the State Legislature to the list of endorsements for State Senator Adriano Espaillat’s congressional campaign. Queens State Senator José Peralta announced he was hopping on board this morning, joining Bronx Senator Gustavo Rivera in supporting their colleague’s campaign against longtime Rep. Charlie Rangel. For his part, Mr. Rangel is expected to get his own prominent backer later today with the endorsement of Bronx Borough Rubén Díaz Jr.

“As a fellow legislator, I have watched Adriano fight for New Yorkers with great passion and energy,” Mr. Peralta said in a statement released by Mr. Espaillat’s campaign. “He has taken on Republican attempts to cut Medicaid, fought for affordable housing by extending and strengthening rent regulations which kept millions of tenants in their homes, and expanded opportunities for immigrants.”

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Tweets From The Trail: Ann Romney’s Former Flames; Michelle Bachmann: International Woman of Mystery

Bus1 300x288 Tweets From The Trail: Ann Romneys Former Flames; Michelle Bachmann: International Woman of Mystery
Ashley Parker (Photo: Twitter)

Today, political types were focused on Mitt Romney’s high school “hijinks,” President Barack Obama’s big gay announcement and Michele Bachmann, International Woman of Mystery. Here’s our roundup of the day’s best Tweets from the campaign trail. Continue reading “Tweets From The Trail: Ann Romney’s Former Flames; Michelle Bachmann: International Woman of Mystery”

Like Dear Old Dad, Fox 5’s Greg Kelly Is No Fan of Bikes

The NYPD has been criticized for its uneasy relationship with the city’s cyclists. As this video from Fox 5 shows, the apple does not fall far from the tree, as Greg Kelly grills DOT Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan for what one might expect to be a celebratory interview about the city’s new bikeshare program. Instead of a helmet, the commissioner should have brought a pair of boxing gloves. Read More