Tuesday, September 20, 2011

In New York, A DNC Date Night For The Obamas

"Sexy" & "Remarkable" on the 2012 campaign trail: At fundraiser, First Couple discuss intimate outings...
President Obama and First Lady Obama were in a flirty mood in New York City on Tuesday evening at a DNC fundraiser, trading compliments and talking about their Date Nights from the stage of the spectacular Gotham Hall. The President is "sexy," Mrs. Obama told the crowd of about 400 guests, and he returned the compliment with G-rated lauds. The evening featured a performance by Grammy award-winning songstress Alicia Keys, and a steak-and potatoes dinner with plenty of wine. It came after a day spent at the United Nations. (Above: Together onstage)

"It's great to be here with my husband, because the truth is we rarely get to travel together anymore. They separate us," Mrs. Obama said. "So this is sort of like our date night."

Mrs. Obama looked ready for a date: She wore a black silk halter-cut tuxedo top, diamond drop earrings, and an armload of sparkling bangles as she introduced her husband.

"I would like to thank all of you for planning such a lovely, intimate evening for the two of us," Mrs. Obama joked, to laughter. "A little dinner, Alicia Keys. Really nice touch. Who knows what will happen?"

Keys had wowed the chic crowd--"lots of hobo bags and Louboutins" noted the pooler on duty--with two of her hits, "Empire State of Mind" and "Blackbird." The President is "sexy," Mrs. Obama said, after noting that people always ask her how her husband has changed.

"The only difference that I can think of is that the salt is starting to catch up with the pepper in his hair," she said. "I think it’s quite sexy, but it’s coming."

The President hasn't changed much, Mrs. Obama said: He's "constant."

"You might have heard about our story--this skinny kid with the funny name, who had the audacity to ask his former mentor out on a date," Mrs. Obama said. "And then his idea of a date was taking me to a church basement...Well, that guy back then was pretty special."

She wrapped up her remarks by urging the crowd to support the sexy President.

“Do you have his back? Are you fired up? Are you ready to go?” Mrs. Obama said. She got screams and applause.

It was her second fundraiser of the day: In the morning, the First Lady joined feminist legend Gloria Steinem for a Campaign 2012 event, also in New York.

President Obama bounded onstage after a flash of blinding light to a standing ovation, and kissed his wife, unscreened by the teleprompter.

"I’m in a New York state of mind," The President said. "What do you think about Michelle Obama? She’s not bad. She is remarkable and it’s the reason why I’ve got remarkable kids. I have improved my gene pool.”

Cheers and applause.

“And it is true, this is the closest we get to a date--which I'm going to have to fix in about 14 months," he added. “Now, the truth is, this is not my idea of a date night. Normally, our dates don't end with me being before 400 of our closest friends."

The President's 400 closest friends had paid between $2,500 a ticket to $35,800 a ticket each, the maximum legal limit, according to a Campaign official.

"I'm here because I need your help," The President said.

That "hopey changey stuff"...Class warfare and DADT...
The President then repeated what has become his new standard stump speech: His deficit and jobs proposal is not class warfare, Congress should pass it immediately, and Warren Buffett's secretary shouldn't pay higher taxes than her billionaire boss. If asking the rich to pay the same tax rates as middle class families makes him a Warrior for the Middle Class, so be it, he said.

"I wear it as a badge of honor," President Obama said. “The only class warfare I’ve seen is the battle that’s been waged against middle class families for a decade now.”

The crowd jumped to their feet and roared.

"Don't Ask, Don't Tell" expired today, and the President pointed to his efforts to repeal the measure as one more reason he needs another term.

“I just met backstage with young Americans who were discharged from the military because of don’t ask don’t tell. As of today that will never happen again,” he said.

Obama for America pushed the same idea on Twitter on Tuesday, and sent e-mails to supporters about DADT, asking for donations so the President can keep moving his gay rights agenda forward. He also spoke about his three-day rural Bus Tour through Minnesota, Iowa and Illinois, in mid-August. (Above: A longshot of the fundraiser)

“All that hopey changey stuff, as they say? That was real," President Obama said. “Let’s get to work, I’m ready to fight. I hope you are too.”

The President exited the stage to a standing ovation, of course. The last Obama Date Night was in August, when the President escorted Mrs. Obama to the tony restaurant at the Beach Plum Inn while vacationing on Martha's Vineyard. In 2009, the First Couple had a now-famous Date Night in New York, flying to the Big Apple for dinner at chef Dan Barber's Blue Hill restaurant in Greenwich village, followed by a Broadway show. The Date Night fulfilled a campaign promise to his wife, the President said.

By 9:20 the motorcade was rolling, and the First Couple was back at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel at 9:35 PM. Mrs. Obama had been introduced by Mayor Cory Booker of Newark, NJ, who is a major supporter of the Let's Move! campaign.

*AP photos

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