Bill Clinton raises millions for Obama

Bill Clinton raises millions for Obama

Bill Clinton raises millions for Obama

Former US President Bill Clinton (L) and US President Barack Obama wave at a fundraiser in New York. The events raised more than $3.5 million. REUTERS photo

U.S. President Barack Obama enlisted Bill Clinton to campaign alongside him in New York on June 4, tapping the popular ex-president’s star power to rake in cash for his re-election bid from Wall Street investors and show-business elite.

The two men teamed up for the first time since Clinton put Obama’s campaign on the defensive last week when he became the most prominent Democrat to disavow attacks on Republican challenger Mitt Romney’s record as a private equity executive. But there was no sign of discord as Obama and Clinton put on a show of unity for a night of fundraising that included a reception with big-money donors, a gala at the Waldorf Astoria hotel, and a star-studded “Barack on Broadway” concert. The events raised more than $3.5 million.

Although surrounded by supporters at events, Obama has struggled to rekindle the enthusiasm of the Democratic base that swept him to victory last time. He acknowledged that he faces a difficult path to re-election and warned his audiences that hundreds of millions in Republican super political action committee fundraising would fuel negative advertising aimed at feeding “all those fears, anxieties” and frustration with the economy.

Romney would be ‘calamitous’

“That’s basically the argument that the other side is making. They’re not offering anything new, they’re just saying, things are tough, it’s Obama’s fault,” he said, according to Reuters. At the first stop on the evening’s fundraising tour, Clinton told a gathering at the Upper East Side home of billionaire hedge fund manager Marc Lasry that Obama must “win this election and win it unambiguously.” “The alternative would be, in my opinion, calamitous for our country and the world,” Clinton said as he and Obama stood shoulder to shoulder amid donors who paid $40,000 a head and sipped cocktails. Clinton accused Romney of wanting to pursue “wrong-headed” economic policies and linked the Republican’s focus on budget austerity to crisis-hit Europe.