Entries in Atlanta (4)


Obamas’ Friday Fundraiser Frenzy: Six Events, $5.6 Million

JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- The first family will fly off for a frenzy of fundraisers on Friday, with first lady Michelle Obama landing in Minneapolis and President Obama in Chicago and Atlanta.

The six events combined should net at least $5.6 million for Democrats and the president’s re-election campaign, according to estimates provided by an Obama campaign official.

Mrs. Obama will host an afternoon reception with 350 supporters in Minneapolis at the Walker Art Center.  The invitation for the event lists tickets starting at $250 to attend and up to $10,000 to mingle with the first lady and take a photo with her.

Meanwhile, the president will start his day in Chicago, headlining a reception at the Palmer House Hilton with more than 600 guests.  Tickets for the event start at $2,500, a campaign official said.  Obama will then head behind closed doors for an intimate roundtable discussion with 60 supporters who have each cut checks for $10,000.

Flying south to Atlanta, Obama will then hobnob with donors into the evening at three fundraisers tailored to the African-American community.

Seventy-five supporters will mingle with the president at an undisclosed private Atlanta residence, where tickets were $10,000 apiece.  Then he’ll join a star-studded concert featuring CeeLo Green at Tyler Perry Studios, where at least 1,000 Obama fans are expected in the crowd, an official said.  Each paid $500 or more.

Before returning to Washington, Obama will visit the home of actor and director Tyler Perry, who’s hosting the ritziest party of the night at $35,800 per head.  At least 60 people are expected to attend to toast the president.

All proceeds from the six events benefit the Obama Victory Fund, a joint account that funnels cash to the Obama campaign and Democratic National Committee, the official said.  The first $5,000 of an individual’s contribution goes to Obama while the remainder -- up to $30,800 -- goes to the DNC.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Romney on Tuesday's Losses: 'Wasn’t There to Respond' to Attacks

Joe Raedle/Getty Images(ATLANTA) -- Mitt Romney, asked if there were any lessons learned in the wake of losing all three Republican voting contests to former Sen. Rick Santorum Tuesday night, said that he simply, “wasn’t there to respond” to Santorum’s attacks in the days leading up to voting.

But on Wednesday, speaking to reporters on a tarmac in Atlanta, where he flew from Colorado after losses in Minnesota, Missouri and Colorado Tuesday night, Romney did not hesitate to go on offense, accusing two chief GOP rivals of behaving “like Democrats.”

“I think, as with South Carolina, we took a lot of incoming in South Carolina and didn’t really respond,” he said. “Obviously, Sen. Santorum was able in Minnesota to level a lot of charges, some of them not accurate, and I wasn’t there to respond. That was just because I happened to be fighting hard out in Nevada.  But I will clearly make the differences between myself and my opponents very clear in where I think they have misrepresented my record and my views, and I’ll make that very clear.”

Romney’s tarmac comments were his first media availability since Feb. 1.

“I think a lot of us feel that the Republican Party lost its way in the past,” he said. “We spent too much, borrowed too much, earmarked too much.  I’m talking about we in the general sense because these were folks in Washington.  And, frankly, Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich were a big part of the ‘we’ that spent too much, borrowed too much and earmarked too much.”

Romney has barely mentioned Gingrich or Santorum by name since his win in the Florida primary, pivoting his attention to focus on President Obama. On Wednesday, Romney hit the GOP field head on, lodging fresh attacks on both candidates -- a change in strategy that one of his senior advisors predicted following Tuesday night’s losses.

“Under Newt Gingrich earmarks doubled,” said Romney. “Rick Santorum was a major earmarker and continues to defend earmarks. Under Rick Santorum, he voted to raise the debt ceiling, I believe, five different times to a tune of about an addition $3.5 trillion.  I believe that while Sen. Santorum was serving in Congress and the Senate, government spending increased by some 80 percent.  Republicans spent too much money, borrowed too much money, earmarked too much, and Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich have to be held accountable.”

Romney suggested that Santorum and Gingrich could be considered part of the reason the tea party movement began -- despite support both candidates have among the people whose enthusiasm pushed Republicans to historic wins in the 2010 Midterm elections.

“One of the reasons the Tea Party grew up, of course, is that people were unhappy about incumbents, people who had spent their careers in Washington borrowing, spending and earmarking,” said Romney.  “And they said, ‘Look, we want to throw the guys out that have been there too long and bring in some new faces.'  And in this race, I’m the only guy that hasn’t spent time in Washington.  And Sen. Santorum and Speaker Gingrich, they are the very Republicans who acted like Democrats.”

“When Republicans act like Democrats, they lose,” said Romney.  “And in Newt Gingrich’s case, he had to resign. In Rick Santorum’s case, he lost by the biggest margin of any Senate incumbent since 1980.”

“Again, borrowing, spending and earmarking is not a good combination if you’re a Republican and not a good combination, in my view, for America,” he said.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Herman Cain Suspends Campaign 

Steve Pope/Getty Images(ATLANTA) -- Herman Cain announced Saturday that he is suspending his campaign for the Republican presidential nomination because of “the continued hurt” caused by claims of sexual harassment and a 13-year extramarital affair which he called “false accusations” that have created a “cloud of doubt over me and my family.”

“I am at peace with my God. I am at peace with my wife and she is at peace with me,” he said.

“With a lot of prayer and soul searching, I am suspending my presidential campaign, because of the continued distraction, the continued hurt on me and my family,” he said.

After a series of speakers praising Cain, the former Godfather’s Pizza CEO thanked a cheering crowd outside his campaign headquarters in Atlanta for standing by him.

“Let me first say that as usual, Cain supporters are not warm weather supporters, and I can’t thank all of you enough for what you’ve done, how far we have come and the things that we have done,” he said.

Once the frontrunner in the Republican polls, Cain’s candidacy has been battered by allegations of sexual harassment and later allegations of a long-term affair.

Michele Bachmann’s communications director told ABC News that Herman Cain’s campaign reached out Saturday morning to officials with rival campaigns.

Bachmann spokeswoman Alice Stewart said she was one of who received a call. She did not say what, if any, announcement was communicated, but Stewart added: “We’ve received numerous inquiries from supporters and staffers in the various states about shifting their support from Cain to Michele.”

And as a crowd waited outside Cain’s headquarter for his decision, some influential Republicans were already declaring Cain’s campaign finished.

“Virtuous or not, declaring in or out, however we feel for him, Herman Cain’s campaign is over,” Iowa Rep. Steve King tweeted this morning. “I thank him as a friend and wish him well.”

Cain’s problems began in October, when Politico reported that two women had accused Cain of sexual harassment and misconduct while he was CEO of the National Restaurant Association (NRA) from 1996 to 1999.

Since then, two other women have also accused Cain of harassment.

Cain acknowledged that the NRA paid off the two women, but has denied there was any truth to the accusations against him.

Then last week, a Georgia woman, Ginger White, said she had a 13-year lavish affair with Cain, allegations that Cain denied even before she went public with her claim. White said she and Cain spent many nights in a ritzy Atlanta hotel, he showered her with gifts and paid for her to travel to events where he was speaking.

The affair ended just before Cain announced his presidential campaign, according to White.

Two weeks before White’s accusation, Cain’s wife of 43 years, Gloria, made a rare public appearance to defend her husband in the wake of accusations of sexual misconduct by several other women.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Herman Cain Train: Will it Make Final Stop on Saturday?

Steve Pope/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- After allegations of sexual harassment and later allegations of a long-term affair rocked his presidential campaign, businessman Herman Cain plans a major announcement in Atlanta on Saturday.

But it is not clear if Cain will carry on another month to the Iowa caucuses early next year or suspend his campaign.

Cain will be at the “Grand Opening” of his Georgia state headquarters in Atlanta Saturday sometime between noon and 2 p.m. Cain plans to have a private meeting with key supporters before he appears at the grand opening, according to multiple sources.

One top Cain supporter revealed Friday night that he expects Cain will end his campaign.

“It’s over,” this supporter said, adding that he has no direct knowledge of Cain’s decision.

Other prominent Cain supporters said they were uncertain.

One source close to Cain who spoke with the candidate as recently as Friday morning told ABC News that he had heard Cain was assuring staff members flying on his private charter plane to Atlanta that he would not drop out of the race.

“I understand on the flight back to the Atlanta area tonight that Mr. Cain was indicating to people on the plane that he was not planning to announce a withdrawal from the race,” the source said.

Meanwhile, officials in the Cain campaign remained mum about the candidate’s intentions.

“No statements have been issued from the campaign regarding his decision,” was all that Cain’s deputy chief of staff, Linda Hansen, would tell ABC News.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio