May 26th, 2009
05:20 PM ET
14 years ago

Obama set for high-profile Vegas fundraiser

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="President Obama will be in Las Vegas Tuesday to headline a fundraising event for Harry Reid."](CNN) - President Obama is set for a night out in Las Vegas Tuesday, but his latest foray to the city of lights is entirely business related.

The president is slated to headline a fundraising event at Caesar's Palace for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, the Nevada Democrat whose approval ratings back home have sunk below 40 percent as his re-election campaign gears up.

The star-studded event, set to raise at least $1 million for Reid's campaign coffers, will take place in Caesar's Coliseum - the 4,000 seat auditorium where singer Bette Midler regularly performs.

A Reid spokesman tells CNN that Midler is among the entertainers on hand for the evening, as well as Vegas performer Clint Holmes, comedienne Rita Rudner, and singers Sheryl Crow and Rachel Yamagata.

The fundraiser, during which Reid and Obama will speak, couldn't come at a better time for the Senate's top Democrat, who is considered among the most vulnerable in the chamber despite the fact Republicans are still scrambling to find a serious opponent to challenge him.

Despite the lack of official opposition, a Mason-Dixon survey released earlier this month suggests only about a third of Nevada's voters would vote to re-elect Reid to a fifth Senate term, while 45 percent said they would definitely vote for another candidate.

Meanwhile, conservative political action committee Our Country Deserves Better is already gunning to capitalize on Reid's sagging poll numbers, launching what they call a "a television, radio, and Internet advertising blitz throughout the state of Nevada reminding voters that Harry Reid has stiffed taxpayers with huge government bailouts and wasteful pork-barrel spending."

The conservative PAC said it would spend over $100,000 in its initial ad campaign, and pledged to dish out over $1 million between now and the November 2010 midterm elections.

"Republicans were successful in defeating Sen. Reid's predecessor, Tom Daschle, in 2004," said CNN Political Editor Mark Preston. "They have now focusing their efforts on trying to defeat another Democratic leader in the next election."

Obama plans to remain in Nevada Wednesday for a visit to Nellis Air Force Base for a tour of the facility's solar electric plant, the largest in North America. The president then heads to Beverly Hills for a pair of fundraisers sponsored by the Democratic National Committee.

–CNN's Ed Henry, Shawna Shepherd and Mark Preston contributed to this report

Filed under: Harry Reid • President Obama
soundoff (155 Responses)
  1. yoyolite

    John your hate mongering is the reason the republican are in the toilet. How dear you make that comment about 20 million illegal latinoes making babies. What about the non latinoes that are illegal and making babies. The only race that should be angry with illegal aliens is the Native American, THE TRUE AMERICAN!

    May 26, 2009 05:38 pm at 5:38 pm |
  2. RWE

    Moderate Democrat is very moderate an open minded.

    May 26, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  3. Terry

    As a good Liberal, I am very disappointed in the Democratic Party leadership. Reid and Pelosi are just career politicians whose interest is in their careers, not in us and what our lives are like.

    I would love to see Reid defeated by a better Democrat, but instead he will likely be defeated by whatever right-wing lunatic the Conservatives of Nevada elect.

    May 26, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  4. Bill

    Can there be a Ban on Fund Raising, till economy gets better?

    If the Wall Street Executives get Bonuses, these Politicians make a big issue that economy is bad, Executives should not get bonuses.

    Shame, Shame, Shame..........................................Shame........................Shame..............................Shame................Shame

    May 26, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  5. deb0155

    Why am I not surprised! Yet another function that we the taxpayers have to pay for. How many millions will this cost us? And, what, for Harry Reid? He's an awful man – and our President has to go out to Vegas to drum up money for him!

    We Americans have truly lost it! We are sheep going to the slaughter!

    May 26, 2009 05:41 pm at 5:41 pm |
  6. J.P.

    In related news, The Messiah will be making a trip to Las Vegas this week...

    May 26, 2009 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  7. yoyolite

    Marinn Pepitone you sound as though you were on the loising end opf the race. Where were your indignations when Bush ran the country into an abyss, he went deeper than the hole. All the republican have left are complaints and boy are you complaining. Don't worry be happy go democrat.

    May 26, 2009 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  8. MJM

    i sure wish we had a president instead of a campaign fund raiser!

    May 26, 2009 05:42 pm at 5:42 pm |
  9. RSB, St George, UT

    Vegas is a stinkhole in the middle of nowhere, all it does is suck up water and power and contribute to wastefulness of resources. It's time to downsize and tear it down.

    May 26, 2009 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  10. FAYE, NV

    Welcome to Las Vegas Mr President, hope your flight was good.
    You and your staff has done good on many things some such as:
    foreclosure, banks, auto, credit cards; however, there's nothing in the making to assist or instruct the car dealership from repo's.

    The way the economy is the dealerships or bank branch who financed the car to the buyer should be patience with the consumer and allow a three month delay in payments. This would help the consumers who are trying to maintain before losing everything.

    This will allow one to drive and seek employment or to catch up with other delayed payment.

    May 26, 2009 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  11. Anna

    I am a democrat but believe Reid and Pelosi, Franks and Dodd are pulling the whole party down. They are using their power just as selfishly and destructively as the Republicans did with Newt and others. None of them seem to really care about what Americans want. So disappointed that Obama is garnering most press for his celebrity appearances and outings. We need to seriously attack some of the problems we have. And where is the indepent media asking the hard questions during press conferences?

    May 26, 2009 05:43 pm at 5:43 pm |
  12. Patrick

    If Obama was really about change he wouldn't campaign for such a divisive person. When Reid said "the war is lost" his career was over.

    May 26, 2009 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  13. Dan

    He called companies not to go to celebrate in Vegas, since they are broke. The USA is also broke, so he is breaking his own request!
    What a political nonsense.

    May 26, 2009 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  14. Big Bill from Brooklyn

    Somehow the venue seems wrong.

    May 26, 2009 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  15. JLS

    Unfortunately Obama is NOT paying for his trip to Vegas, We, the taxpayers are!! It's more of the "Do as I say, not as I do"!!

    May 26, 2009 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  16. to Scott

    Best use of sarcasm I've seen in a while. I would have believed you if you were talking about Congressman Ron Paul or Dennis Kucinich, but this is just hilarious to anyone with a brain that enjoys thinking.

    May 26th, 2009 4:51 pm ET

    I think it is a great thing for President Obama to take the time to go to Nevada and campaign for Senator Harry Reid. Whats wrong with the people of Nevada? Senator Reid is a good person who serves the state of Nevada with dilligence and honor, Harry Reid should remain as the Majority Leader in the Senate, he is a proven leader who stands up for whats right.

    Scott Stodden (Freeport, Il)

    May 26, 2009 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  17. yoyolite

    Gee it's amazing when white presidents were picking judges that were pro-white men it wasn't racist. The chickens have come home to rosst.

    May 26, 2009 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  18. DAVE

    Mellisa said
    He never said "don't go spend money in vegas", he said "don't spend taxpayer money in vegas". If people want to blow their whole official paycheck on gambling, then they can go ahead and do it.

    Republicans have selective memories
    Who's money do you think he is spending!!!!
    Our country is far more in dept than any company who got bailout money.
    selective memory?????
    How about complete total ignorance Mellisa. Your pretty smart arnt ya

    May 26, 2009 05:46 pm at 5:46 pm |
  19. Tom Dawson

    In spite of his brains, it's unfortunate that Senator Reid's persona does not breed confidence in anything he says.

    May 26, 2009 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  20. Proud Member..Party of No

    Three words: Worst President Ever!

    May 26, 2009 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  21. Rob

    To bj May 26th, 2009 5:06 pm ET – The difference is Bush didn't bash the automaker CEO's for flying private planes to the Senate hearings. Obama sits here and blasts CEOs for taking private planes, or businesses having meetings in Vegas, and then HE goes and does the very same things. And the thing is, bailouts aside, the public doesn't directly pay for a company's private plane or business meetings. The public DOES pay for Barry to jet around, and they ARE paying for the fundraiser in Vegas.

    And if you look at it as a business, the US is a corporation that its CEO (the Enlightened One) is running right into the ground.

    May 26, 2009 05:48 pm at 5:48 pm |
  22. stewsha

    How can President Obama support Reid?!? Reid and his power hungry reign need to end.

    May 26, 2009 05:49 pm at 5:49 pm |
  23. Anonymous

    shannon, srco, Sniffit, Tim
    This is not a private event, this is for a publically elected official. Based on your comments – I should hold my campaign event in Texas although I'm running for office in Florida. I tell ya – some people are so smart – too smart for their own good.

    May 26, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  24. Stevo

    Seems this president travels around more that sitting in his Oval Office working on fixing the problems that this country has right now.

    May 26, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  25. Tulsa

    @Rob May 26th, 2009 5:48 pm ET
    Actually, it was Congress who made hay about them flying in to ask for a bailout.
    Get your facts straight.

    May 26, 2009 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
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