Some of Obama's richer allies dismissed the idea that the president could be damaged by the perception of being too close to Hollywood and Wall Street types, despite taking millions of dollars from them and supporting the bailout of the banks that caused the financial crisis.
They might have a point — a brief dust-up in the summer of 2011 over a secret meeting Obama had with elite donors in the White House's Blue Room was almost immediately forgotten, despite the news being forced out of the administration by the press. At that March 7 meeting organized by the Democratic National Committee, Obama spoke with 30 donors to his 2008 campaign, many of whom work on Wall Street.
"I know he is meeting a number of people who have wealth, and virtually any president, particularly one who is going to run a second time, is going to meet such persons, but I think Barack Obama has a very steady anchor in terms of his value system," said Peter Buttenweiser, a major Obama bundler. "Who he's meeting with and who he's talking with, etcetera, seems to me to be somewhat irrelevant."