Obama, Hollywood huddle to take back Senate, House
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President Obama will be the star attraction at two fundraisers in Los Angeles this week that are intended to raise money for Democrats hoping to win back the House and the Senate this fall.

Obama’s rush to California for House and Senate Democrats is fresh evidence of the optimism his party feels about its chances of taking back at least one of the two chambers.

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Democrats face a favorable battleground in the Senate, where Republicans are defending 24 seats, many of them in states won by Obama.

The House is a much tougher climb, but Democrats believe that if Republicans ride into November with Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpIvanka Trump pens op-ed on kindergartners learning tech Bharara, Yates tamp down expectations Mueller will bring criminal charges Overnight Cybersecurity: Equifax security employee left after breach | Lawmakers float bill to reform warrantless surveillance | Intel leaders keeping collusion probe open MORE or Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzWhatever you think the Alabama special election means, you’re probably wrong This week: Congress gets ball rolling on tax reform Week ahead: Senators work toward deal to fix ObamaCare markets MORE as their presidential nominee, substantial gains are possible.

“Now there can actually be talk of making significant gains in the House and reclaiming of the Senate,” said Los Angeles-based Democratic political strategist Donna Bojarsky. “This wasn’t the case six months ago, but now it’s clear that the down-ballot races are going to be influenced by the presidential election — and not for the good of the Republicans.”

Guest lists for the Hollywood-oriented events look like a who’s who of the industry’s deep-pocketed Democrats, who may also be feeling more bullish about November. 

Among the co-chairs and co-hosts for Thursday night’s event at the home of Disney Studios Chairman Alan Horn and his environmental activist wife Cindy are Democratic stalwarts Norman and Lyn Lear; Barbra Streisand and James Brolin; “Star Wars: A Force Awakens” director J.J. Abrams and his wife, Katie McGrath; campaign maestro Andy Spahn and his wife Jennifer Perry; and Peg Yorkin.

Proceeds from the $15,000-per-couple dinner go to the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.) and DCCC chair Ben Ray Luján (N.M.) also will attend.

The dinner includes a photo opportunity with Obama. A $33,400-per-couple donation gets attendees a listing as a co-host. Couples donating $66,800 will get admission to a special VIP reception with the president.

The following morning, Obama will attend a breakfast fundraiser — to benefit the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee — at the home of actor Tobey Maguire and wife Jennifer Meyer Maguire. Tickets for that event are going for $33,400 per couple.

The president then will move on to San Francisco for a similar round of congressional fundraising.

Hollywood’s Democratic activists have been taking the measure of their party’s senatorial opportunities for some time. 

As The Hill previously reported, Spahn — long considered Hollywood’s top political fundraiser — has taken the role of entertainment industry point man in this effort, conducting a series of meetings with senatorial candidates at his offices in the Universal Studios compound.

Patrick Murphy, who is seeking the Florida seat vacated by Sen. Marco RubioMarco Antonio RubioOvernight Defense: Tillerson, Trump deny report of rift | Tillerson says he never considered resigning | Trump expresses 'total confidence' in secretary | Rubio asks Army to kick out West Point grad Rubio asks Army to kick out West Point grad with pro-communist posts GOP establishment doubts Bannon’s primary powers MORE, has made a trip to Los Angeles recently for support — as have Colorado Sen. Michael Bennett, Michigan’s Gary Peters and Missouri Secretary of State Jason Kander, who is looking to unseat incumbent Republican Roy BluntRoy Dean BluntThe Hill's Whip List: Republicans try again on ObamaCare repeal Another health funding cliff puts care for millions at risk Top Senate Dem: We're going forward with understanding we can work with White House on DACA MORE.