The notoriously camera-shy president finally knuckled under and posed for some photos Wednesday evening. He claims he’s not interested in photo ops, but he’ll gladly do it if you contribute to his campaign coffers.
According to the event pool report, Rodriguez greeted guests on Wednesday evening, saying “welcome to the castle.” Obama, who has come under sharp criticism for fundraising with celebrities in Texas while declining to make a trip to the troubled border, took the microphone at 11:02 p.m.
The crowd was gathered poolside in a tent, lit by three ornate crystal chandeliers. (Those who had paid $5,000 to attend were allowed to get their picture taken with the president, according to a copy of the invite obtained by THR. Guests who donated $32,400 to the DNC were allowed to attend a special VIP reception with the president at Rodriguez’s manse.)
Obama spoke at length about his affinity for Austin, according to the pool report. He noted that the last time he took a walk “unencumbered” was in Austin when he was campaigning for office in 2008. “I have wistful memories of that walk,” said Obama, who appeared relaxed despite his marathon day giving speeches and fundraising in Denver, Dallas and Austin.
Wistful memories of walking? Please. Meanwhile, after claiming Republicans were his friends Wednesday he then trashed them at another fundraiser.
“One of the suggestions I had for Governor Perry was that it would be useful for my Republican friends to rediscover the concept of negotiation and compromise,” he said.
Later, at the home of Dallas lawyer Marc Stanley at a fundraiser for the Democrats’ congressional campaign arm, Obama pounded the theme. He told about 50 donors that Republicans were “more invested in obstruction than compromise and producing for the American people.”
He added: “We’re prepared to do tough things, and we’d love to have a partner on the other side, but we don’t right now.”
As for his latest fundraising blitz as the Southern border collapses, there won’t be much of his famed transparency. Man of the people, yo!