Friday, June 24, 2011

Fatcat Fundraisers Flee From Obama: 'The Democratic Business-Donor Community is Demoralized'

Apparently there's a limit for people being demonized on a daily basis. At some point you learn not to reward your enemies.
President Obama hit the Big Apple last night hoping to score a fund-raising hat trick for his re-election campaign -- but he faced lackluster donors tired of being taken for granted and some pointed no-shows by prominent Wall Streeters.

"The Democratic business-donor community is demoralized," a Democratic fund-raiser told The Post before the three cash-currying events Obama was attending in Manhattan over a three-hour span. "There's not the level of enthusiasm or excitement. They don't believe he's interested in what they have to say."

Among those feeling burned by Obama are financial execs sick of being demonized by the White House and made a scapegoat for the nation's economic woes.

Although Obama raked in lots of cash last night from a dinner at the Upper East Side restaurant Daniel -- where about 70 hedge-funders and other deep pocketed donors forked over $35,800 a head -- it was big-time execs turning down the invitation who raised eyebrows.

Both JPMorgan Chase chief Jamie Dimon and Citigroup boss Vikram Pandit had made it clear they would not attend the event, which was closed to the press.

Also planning to skip the event were Blackstone Group President Tony James and its top real-estate exec, Jonathan Gray; Morgan Stanley CEO James Gorman and its president, Greg Fleming; and Goldman Sachs President Gary Cohn.

"I think there are a lot of Wall Street-types who are unhappy," said a financial exec who has supported Obama in the past.

"Do I think everyone's going to abandon the president? I'd say no -- I'm not going to abandon him -- but I get the sense he's going to get far less support than he did in the past."

Obama -- last night addressing the bankers he once derided as "fat cats" -- joked about his dwindling popularity among them.

"I know that it's not going to be exactly the same as when I was young and vibrant and new," he said. "Let's face it, it was cool to support me back then [in 2008] . . . Now I'm sort of old news."

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