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Obama's Hollywood fundraising push meets with protests

(Xinhua)

15:27, September 27, 2011

Obama's Hollywood fundraising push meets with protests

English.news.cn 2011-09-27 11:24:07 FeedbackPrintRSS

LOS ANGELES, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama, who came to Hollywood Monday seeking donations and votes for his reelection bid, found some former supporters turned to be protestors.

Obama started his seven-stop fundraising swing Sunday that was taking him from Seattle to Hollywood to San Diego and will end in Denver on Tuesday.

California is traditionally Democratic and Hollywood is widely regarded as very liberal which offered both money and votes for his 2008 election and his 2012 reelection campaign. Obama aims at raising 4 million dollars during his seven-stop campaign events.

Speaking at the House of Blues in West Hollywood, the president acknowledged that his reelection bid would be an especially tough one because people are discouraged and disillusioned with government. Even his former supporters on the West Coast are not satisfied with what he has done at the White House.

Obama was pushing throughout for his job proposal, which combines tax cuts, unemployment benefits and public works spending, but the bill faces a hostile reception on Capitol Hill.

Jobs are a major concern in California, where unemployment stands at 12.1 per cent, higher than any U.S. state except Nevada.

Obama's job approval rating dropped to 46 per cent among Californians in a Field Poll this month. Among Democrats it was 69 per cent, but that was down 10 percentage points from June.

Californians voted for Obama by 24 points in 2008 and the Democrats and nonpartisans were the backbone of his support, but he's losing some of that now.

As Obama was attending a fundraising event in West Hollywood, hundreds of demonstrators rallied on the streets to demand for the ending of wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, which cost over 800 million dollars every single day, and fund people' s needs such as not to accept cuts to Social Security, Medicare and other vital social programs.

Most of the demonstrators were supporters of Obama in his 2008 election, but now, they feel disappointed.

"Yes, we are disappointed. We supported him in 2008 hoping he would help the poor and start immigration reform. But three years later, he has done nothing on immigration reform. What's worse, the Obama Administration has deported more undocumented immigrants than the Bush Administration," Juan Jose Gutierrez, spokesperson for the Full Rights for Immigration Coalition, told Xinhua.

Gutierrez said new immigrants, especially the Latino community, are disappointed over what Obama has done so far. He estimated that many Latino voters who voted for Obama in 2008 would have a second thought this time.

James Lafferty, Executive Director of the National Lawyers Guild and steering board member of the ANSWER Coalition, told Xinhua that Obama has not cashed his 2008 election campaign check by supporting immigration reform and help for the needed.

"Obama talked much about change in his 2008 election and that has attracted many young voters. But three years after he took office, no changes have taken place. The wars in Afghanistan and Iraq are still going on, and there are cuts on spending for the needed," said Lafferty.

Sturtz Ellen from the Get Equal organization told Xinhua that she supported Obama in 2008, but she needs to push him to do more for the Americans who supported him.

In her opinion, Obama has not done enough to protect the minorities, the lesbians and gay community.

"We might continue to support him, but he needs to do more to push forward for his agendas," said Ellen.

Demonstrators held sighs such as "Rights for the people, not the corporations," "Jobs and education, not war and occupation," Healthcare, not warfare" and "Human need over corporate greed."

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