Biden rakes in $25 million in US fundraiser featuring Obama, Clinton, Lizzo By Reuters

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It’s Jeff Mason

NEW YORK (Reuters) – President Joe Biden and his Democratic predecessor, Barack Obama, flew to New York on Thursday for a fundraiser with former President Bill Clinton that organizers said raised more than $25 million for Biden’s re-election campaign.

Biden and two former officials will participate in a discussion moderated by “The Late Show” Stephen Colbert on Thursday night at Radio City Music Hall in front of thousands of guests.

Singers Queen Latifah, Lizzo, Ben Platt, Cynthia Erivo and Lea Michele are expected to perform. Some high-paying attendees will have their photos taken with the three presidents by celebrity photographer Annie Leibovitz.

Former President Donald Trump, who is running against Republican Biden in the November election, was also in New York, attending a ceremony for a police officer killed in New York City.

Biden, 81, has faced concerns about his age and fitness for four years. The latest Reuters/Ipsos poll shows his approval rating at 40% and a tight race with Trump, who is 77, ahead of the election on Nov. 5.

Tickets for Thursday’s event, which is expected to bring excitement to Mr. Biden’s retry, cost between $250 and $500,000 each, according to Democrats familiar with the event. The campaign said it raised more than $25 million. More than 5,000 people were expected to arrive. The event will not be televised, but the campaign plans to post videos on social media.

Small-dollar donors paid $25 to participate in a separate event with Obama, Biden and Clinton. Democrats are hoping to showcase the party’s best-known names and allies even though polls show a strong preference for Biden and in contrast to the Republican Party, which has a large number of anti-Trump voters.

“President Obama and President Clinton strongly support President Biden’s leadership and his agenda,” White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre said Wednesday. “We understand the importance of these three being together.”

Mr. Biden has visited all of the war zones since his State of the Union address earlier this month, but he has mostly spoken to minorities, one way to strengthen engagement with ordinary Americans.

A show of support from Obama, who is still popular with Democrats, could boost interest from young voters and some progressives who voted for Biden in 2020 but are angry about Israel’s strong support in response to the Hamas attack on Oct. 7.

Clinton’s complaint is not clear. Her affair with a White House staffer, which nearly cost her the presidency, has been re-examined in the #MeToo women’s movement, with a renewed focus on power imbalances.

The allure of seeing all three men together made the Democratic banks.

“The numbers don’t lie: Today’s event is a powerful show and a powerful show of re-election for the Biden-Harris ticket,” campaign chairman Jeffrey Katzenberg said in a statement.

THE STORY

On Long Island east of the city, Trump went to a memorial service for Jonathan Diller, the New York police officer who was shot and killed during a traffic stop earlier this week in the city.

“These things cannot happen. We need law and order,” Trump, surrounded by mourning uniformed officials, told reporters gathered outside a funeral home in Massapequa.

The former president has tried to make the police a focal point of his campaign, while criticizing the law enforcement he wants.

Trump is facing four charges for trying to interfere in the 2020 election, mishandling classified documents and participating in a “money laundering scheme” involving porn stars. It was worth hundreds of millions of dollars for increasing its value to lenders. He says he is innocent.

Obama has expressed concern for Mr. Biden that Mr. Trump will win, before the shakeup of the Biden team that sent two top White House aides to the campaign from Wilmington, Delaware.

The former president spent time at the White House recently preparing a video to mark the day he signed the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. Biden is campaigning hard on his efforts to strengthen the law and has criticized Republicans for wanting to repeal it.

Biden’s campaign raised more than $53 million in February and $10 million in the 24 hours following his March 7 address to Congress. Biden often criticizes Trump. Biden is taking most of his money from large donations and small donations of less than $200.

Trump wants to raise $33 million in the April 6 fundraiser, a source familiar with the Republican plan told Reuters.

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