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  • Writer's pictureOlga Nesterova

Big Apple Takes Center Stage in Political Arena

Clinton, Obama, Biden in New York City, March 28, 2024
Doug Mills | New York Times

New York City took center stage in the presidential campaign as incumbent President Biden, along with former Presidents Obama and Clinton, attended a historic fundraiser at Radio City Music Hall.

Prior to the public event, the Presidents sat down for a candid conversation. President Biden shared that 97% of his campaign funds are based on average $200 grassroots donations and thanked his supporters for their contributions.

Seated beside each other, the Presidents shared their favorite aspects of being POTUS, addressed the importance of public support in a grassroots campaign, and even shared their favorite ice cream flavors.

The main event, attended by 5,000 donors, raised a record-breaking $25 million and showcased Democratic unity. The trio, surrounded by celebrity supporters, emphasized Biden's accomplishments, including expanding healthcare coverage and job creation.

Donald Trump at the wake of the slain NYPD officer in Long Island, NY on March 28, 2024
Dave Sanders | New York Times

Meanwhile, former President Trump made an appearance at a wake for a slain officer on Long Island, highlighting a tough-on-crime message. While not an official campaign stop, Trump's presence drew a contrast with Biden's fundraising event.

Pro Palestine protestors gathering in front of the Radio City Music Hall in NYC where Biden, Clinton and Obama hosted a fundraising event
Leonardo Munoz, AFP | Getty Images

Protests outside the Democratic fundraiser highlighted concerns over the Gaza conflict, with demonstrators expressing frustration with Biden's response. Inside, interruptions briefly disrupted the program, but Biden addressed the issue with empathy and understanding.

“It’s understandable Israel has such a profound anger and Hamas is still there,” said President Biden, adding that “we must, in fact, stop the effort that is resulting in significant deaths of innocent civilians, particularly children.”

Despite the serious tone, the evening ended on a lighter note, with humor and musical performances by celebrity endorsers. However, access for the press was limited, with only a small group allowed to attend, and video footage was prohibited.

The events of the day underscored the central dynamics of the race, with Biden enjoying support from the Democratic establishment, while Trump stood largely alone in his messaging.

New York's role as the epicenter of political activity set the stage for a contentious general election campaign.


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