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Obama visits Los Angeles, attends star-studded fundraising gala

President Barack Obama joined Hollywood celebrities in Los Angeles Wednesday in a moving tribute to Holocaust victims.
May 7, 2014 5:10:49 AM PDT
President Barack Obama arrived in Los Angeles Wednesday afternoon to attend a political event and a USC gala.

Mr. Obama attended a fundraiser at the Bel-Air home of Walt Disney Studios Chairman Alan Horn. Horn hosted a fundraiser for Democratic congressional candidates, where top tickets cost around $65,000 per couple.

The president then headed over to a hotel in Century City to receive an award from the USC Shoah Foundation presented by Steven Spielberg.

After Spielberg's Oscar-winning direction of "Schindler's List," he started the Shoah Foundation to document thousands of stories from Holocaust survivors.

In accepting the humanitarian award from Spielberg, the president shared a message for all survivors of genocides.

"Every day that you have lived, every child and grandchild that your families have brought into this world, has served as the ultimate rebuke to evil," Mr. Obama said. "You are an inspiration to every single one of us."

Bruce Springsteen provided the music for the star-studded event, which included Conan O'Brien, Samuel L. Jackson and Rita Wilson.

Drivers are urged to avoid the area around the Beverly Hilton Thursday morning when the president is set to leave.

Here's how to avoid the traffic:

  • From 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Thursday, avoid the area around Santa Monica Boulevard and Avenue of the Stars and Pico Boulevard and Motor Avenue.


  • Note: All trucks will be restricted from Wilshire Boulevard between Santa Monica and Avenue of the Stars from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.

This is the president's 17th visit to the Los Angeles area since he took office. All but three of those trips have included political fundraising events.

Earlier Wednesday, the president visited Arkansas to view the devastation from the recent tornadoes and met with some of the victims. The storms destroyed dozens of homes and left 15 people dead.

The president promised full support and pledged that the federal government will be with the residents there until they finish rebuilding.

"There's a lot of work that remains to be done but I'm here to remind them that they're not doing this work alone. When something like this happens to a wonderful community like this one, it happens to all of us," Mr. Obama said.


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