Tyler Perry Hosts Fundraisers for President Barack Obama
History in Southwest Atlanta: The President Visits Tyler Perry Studios
Movie mogul Tyler Perry helped raise millions for President Barack Obama’s 2012 campaign by hosting fundraisers in Atlanta at his very own Tyler Perry Studios and at his private estate March 16. The cost of the fundraisers ranged from $250 to $35,800, with the least expensive ticket price giving guests entrance into the swank Tyler Perry Studios, a performance by Grammy nominated singer and producer Cee-Lo Green, a chance to hobnob amongst Atlanta dignitaries such as Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed, Rev. Dr. Joseph Lowery and U.S. Rep. John Lewis, and a chance to witness a historical campaign speech by President Barack Obama. A photo with President Obama cost $10,000. The highest priced ticket – $35,800 – included dinner at Perry’s mansion in Buckhead, where media mogul and Perry’s friend Oprah Winfrey was also present.
Perry was overwhelmed with emotion as he introduced the President to an exuberant crowd of more than a thousand supporters at Tyler Perry Studios chanting, “Four More Years!”
“This is surreal to me,” Perry said as he began to introduce the President. Perry shared how he had no role models growing up, but still imagined owning his own business and opening his own studio.
“But in everything that I have imagined I never thought there would be a day when the presidential motorcade would come through southwest Atlanta – giving all of these little boys and little girls a glimpse of what destiny looks like,” Perry said. “The very fact that the president is here should speak to the possibility of all of us taking the limits off our own imaginations. It should speak to the possibilities of all of us being better – a better you, a better me. It should speak to the possibilities of a better today and a better tomorrow. And in that better tomorrow it speaks to the possibility of four more years.”
Perry continued, “In all that I imagined, I never imagined that I would be able to say, ‘Ladies and gentleman, the President of The United States of America – President Barack Obama’.”
After joining Perry on stage, President Obama gave him his due. “When you look at a Tyler Perry and all that he’s achieved and the humility and graciousness with which he’s achieved it, you can’t help but be proud of him and proud of our country. So, give it up for Mr. Tyler Perry,” President Obama said.
The overzealous crowd continued to cheer throughout the President’s 30-minute speech about the economy, the uprooting the U.S. troops, and health care – just to name a few of his topics.
In regards to health care reform, President Obama stated, “You want to call it Obamacare − that’s okay, because I do care,” he affirmed to thunderous applause. “That is why we passed it– because I care about folks who were going bankrupt − because they were getting sick. And I care about children who have preexisting conditions and their families couldn’t get them any kind of insurance. And so now we’ve got reforms that will ensure that in this great country of ours you won’t have to mortgage your house just because you get sick.”
By the close of his speech, the President promised to finish what he started. “I promise you change will come,” he re-affirmed. “The change you believe in will come. And we will remind the world once again just why it is the United States of America is the greatest country on Earth.”
By Sonya Jenkins