CHICAGO - At an intimate gathering tonight with some of his wealthiest re-election financiers in Chicago, President Obama reflected on the fact that 2012 will be his "last campaign."
And in an attempt to show some empathy and good humor to those who have helped him along the way, Obama compared his hosts' friendship and financial support to the prospect of always having a kid in college.
"Every year… just another tuition check," Obama joked. "I'm finally graduating!" he reassured, drawing loud laughter and applause.
The remarks came at an exclusive dinner with 60 guests inside the private home of media mogul Fred Eychaner. Each couple paid $35,800 to attend, a Democratic official said.
Eychaner is one of Obama's campaign bundlers, volunteer fundraisers who give the legal maximum ($5,000) and then collect the same from their deep-pocket friends and colleagues. He bundled between $50,000 and $100,000 for Obama and Democrats through September, according to records provided by Obama's campaign.
Among the guests spotted in attendance were Illinois Gov. Patrick Quinn and U.S. Sens. Dick Durbin of Illinois and Claire McCaskill of Missouri.