The first 5 PM gala featured a performance by singer Cee Lo Green and was sponsored by the African American Leadership Council. It sold tickets for $500-$2,500 per person. A photo with the president cost $10,000. About 1,000 people attended, according to a spokesperson. Local news reports said Obama spoke to the crowd for 30 minutes and kept to many of his campaign points such as healthcare and increasing taxes on the wealthy. He took a friendly jab at host Perry on that score. “Tyler can afford to do a little more. He knows that,” said Obama.
Then an 8 PM elite dinner followed at Perry’s private estate with an estimated 40 guests — including Perry’s gal pal Oprah Winfrey — paying for tickets costing $35,800 per person. The money will be split between the campaign and the Democratic National Committee.