First lady to do West Coast fundraising swing later this month


First lady Michelle Obama attends the ceremony to present the 5,000th Daily Point of Light Award in the East Room of the White House in Washington on July 15, 2013. (Susan Walsh/AP)

Michelle Obama will headline three Democratic fundraisers in San Francisco and Los Angeles on Jan. 29-31, according to documents and Democratic officials who asked not to be identified.

A White House official confirmed the trip but did not elaborate further.

While President Obama has repeatedly traveled to help fill the Democratic Party's coffers since winning reelection (he conducted a three-day fundraising swing on the West Coast in late November) the first lady hits the campaign trail far less often. In June, she threatened to walk out of a fundraiser in a private Washington, D.C., home after being heckled by a gay rights activist.

On Jan. 31, Michelle Obama will be the "special guest" at a women's lunch in San Francisco's Fairmont Hotel, according to the invitation obtained by The Washington Post, where she will join House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) in supporting the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. The VIP reception and lunch -- rescheduled from October, when the government shutdown effectively froze all fundraising activity -- represents the first event she has done this election cycle for the DCCC.

Chairing the women's lunch costs $32,400 per couple, according to the invite, a price that includes a table of 10 at the event along with two tickets to the VIP reception and a photo with the first lady. Attendees will have to get up early if they want to gain entry, however: The invitation requests that donors arrive at 9 a.m..

The first lady will also attend events for the Democratic National Committee on Jan. 29 in Los Angeles and Jan. 30 in San Francisco.

Juliet Eilperin is The Washington Post's White House bureau chief, covering domestic and foreign policy as well as the culture of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. She is the author of two books—one on sharks, and another on Congress, not to be confused with each other—and has worked for the Post since 1998.

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