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Much of New York’s West Village was behind steel police gates Thursday night as President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama arrived at Sarah Jessica Parker’s townhouse for a $40,000 a plate fundraiser co-hosted by Vogue’s Anna Wintour. Michael Kors, Meryl Streep and Andy Cohen were among the 50 or so partygoers, who began arriving at the home at around 6:30 p.m. Parker’s husband Matthew Broderick was a notable absence. The actor skipped the event for his current job on Broadway, where he is starring in “Nice Work If you Can Get It.” The Obamas’ arrival about an hour later brought foot traffic in the neighborhood to a halt as onlookers angled for a glimpse of the presidential motorcade. Once inside, the President offered a fairly standard stump speech, that earned some unprompted enthusiasm from Parker’s son, James. The 9-year-old clapped enthusiastically when Obama mentioned the resurgence of GM.
“That’s worth applauding,” Obama said breaking from his remarks and earning wider applause from the room. “Yes, why not? Why not? James has been dying to — he wanted to fire up the crowd a little bit.”
Following the lead of a similar fundraiser held recently by George Clooney in Los Angeles, Parker and Wintour made space for a less wealthy campaign contributor — “A New York Night” contest winner Robin Hunt, a project administrator at Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Md., who brought her mother as her guest.
Around 9 p.m. The President and First Lady left for their next campaign event, at the Plaza Hotel — a less pricey affair at $10,000 a head for 250 guests, where Alicia Keys was due to perform. As the motorcade pulled away, Wintour and Parker stood outside under the white tent assembled for arrivals waving at the passing vehicles.