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State dinner brings together Obama's top fundraisers, politicians, celebrities

March 14, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
President Barack Obama and the first lady threw their biggest state dinner ever Wednesday night.

The guest list brought together Hollywood stars and top fundraisers for the president's re-election campaign. The president and first lady greeted British Prime Minister David Cameron and his wife, Samantha, as they arrived for the state dinner. Mrs. Obama wore a dark teal Marchesa evening gown.

The party was thrown under a giant tent on the south lawn of the White House. The 360 guests invited to the event included billionaire Warren Buffett, Richard Branson, George Clooney and British actor Damian Lewis, the star of the series "Homeland." The president is apparently a fan of the show.

Calif. Attorney General Kamala Harris was among the many prominent political figures. Movie mogul Harvey Weinstein, a big fundraiser for Obama's re-election was joined by his wife, Georgina Chapman, who designed Mrs. Obama's gown.

After dinner, the guests were entertained by the musical group, Mumford & Sons. During remarks to the crowd, President Obama emphasized his close relationship with the prime minister.

"In good times and in bad, he's just the kind of partner that you want at your side," the president said. "I trust him. He says what he does, and he does what he says."

Cameron also focused on the importance of the ties between the two countries.

"Like my predecessors, I'm proud of our essential relationship and of Britain's strong national bond with the United States of America," Cameron said.

The event brought together more than three dozen of the president's top fundraisers. They're known as "bundlers," high-profile fundraisers who make big contributions and collect checks from friends and associates. The bundlers have become key supporters of the president's campaign. The fundraisers who attended the state dinner have raised more than $8 million for his re-election effort.

President Obama and the Democratic Party have cashed more than $250 million in contributions, surpassing all of his potential Republican challengers.


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