Senator Barack Obama's motorcade slipped into the back entrance of the Beverly Wilshire while hundreds of people waited to get inside the $2,500-per-person fundraiser.
Despite tough economic times, L.A. City Council President Eric Garcetti said people are willing to donate even small amounts of money if it brings change.
"I know people who are sending $5, $15 checks in and they're unemployed," said Garcetti. "I was given a small donation, a hundred-dollar bill, from a housekeeper in the San Fernando Valley, who wrote in Spanish that she was hoping and praying that Barack Obama could bring the change that we need in this country."
Earlier, Obama attended a $28,500-per-plate dinner at Greystone Mansion. About 250 people paid that much to see their candidate and help the Democratic National Committee.
Obama's Southern California stop could set a one-night fundraising record. The two events combined are estimated to rake in more than $9 million.
On the campaign trail and at kitchen tables nationwide, the economy is the main issue.
"This foundation of our economy, the American worker, is strong," said Senator John McCain (R-Ariz.) at a campaign rally. "But it's been put at great risk by the greed and mismanagement of Wall Street and Washington."
Senator McCain is calling for a commission to study the nation's economic problems, similar to the 9-11 Commission. But Senator Obama has quickly dismissed the idea.
"We know how we got into this mess. What we need now is leadership that gets us out," said Senator Obama. "I'll provide it, John McCain won't, and that's the choice for Americans in this election."
Wednesday, Senator Obama heads to Las Vegas, where he will hold a free event open to the public. Senator McCain and Alaska Governor Sarah Palin (R) are going to be in Grand Rapids, Mich., campaigning.
Alaska's attorney general said that state workers won't have to testify in the investigation into Governor Palin. That case is now commonly referred to as "Troopergate." Palin is accused of firing her public safety chief for refusing to dismiss Palin's former brother-in-law, who is an Alaska state trooper.