President Barack Obama cracked jokes with George Clooney and other guests at a star-studded fundraiser held at the actor's home last night that raised nearly $15 million for Obama's reelection campaign and the Democratic Party.
Celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck whipped up dinner for the event, attended among others by A-listers including Robert Downey Jr., Barbra Streisand and James Brolin, Jack Black, Billy Crystal, Salma Hayek, Tobey Maguire and of course Clooney's girlfriend, Stacy Keibler. Guests paid $40,000 to attend and additional money was raised through a raffle held beforehand.
Keibler later tweeted
about the event: "That was a once in a lifetime experience. Such an amazing evening."
"We raised a lot of money because people love George," Obama said of the affair, which reportedly took in a record amount for a single fundraiser. "They like me -- they love George."
The president revealed to the crowd that his famed Hope poster from the 2008 campaign was actually derived from a photograph of him sitting next to Clooney when Obama was a U.S. senator. "This is the first time that George Clooney has ever been photo-shopped out of a picture," Obama quipped. "Never happened before, never happen again."
Obama didn't even have to mention gay marriage to get a vigorous applause from the friendly crowd. "Obviously, yesterday we made some news," he said coyly, referring to a recent interview in which he threw his official support to marriage equality for same-sex couples.
Puck's dinner menu included an artichoke salad, followed by roasted duckling Peking style with tiny buns, a duo of lamb and beef cheek with potatoes and Brussels sprouts, and sweet corn tortelloni.