Michelle Obama Tells Hollywood Donors: “Barack Can’t Do It Alone. He’s Not Spider-Man”


First Lady Michelle Obama, appearing at a casual Sunday fundraiser geared to families at the home of Gwen Stefani, appealed for support not just from adults but from the kids in the crowd — with a dose of humor.

“Barack can’t do it alone. He’s not Spider-Man. He’s not a superhero. He’s a human, so we need your help,” she said to the crowd of about 400 people, per a pool report. “I am not just talking to the adults here today. I am talking to all the young people here as well. All of our young people, you might not be old enough to vote. You vote at school, I know, I met several young people who are going to be voting for my husband, who are 10 and under, we accept those votes.”

The crowd cheered and laughed.

“But you can play an important role in this election, too. I want you all to feel empowered.”

The First Lady is going on to a reception later this afternoon at the home of Barry Meyer, the chairman and CEO of Warner Bros. A fundraising source said that both events have sold out.

The scene at the Stefani event — held in the back lawn of her home in a gated estate off of Mulholland and billed as a family fun day — was akin to a small carnival, with children getting fake tattoos and holding animal balloons, as well as pieces of paper reading “High Five for President Obama!” and bearing a spot for their palm prints. Stefani’s tennis court was decorated with a bridge of red, white and blue balloons arranged in the form of an American flag.

Stefani was there with her two children, but her husband Gavin Rossdale was touring and not present. Also there were No Doubt bandmates, along with their children, as well as Jeffrey Tambor and Alyson Hannigan. Nicole Richie and Joel Madden also were there, each holding one of their two children.

Tickets to the event started at $2,500 per family.

A photo of Michelle Obama and Gwen Stefani at the event is here.

Update: The First Lady echoed some of the same points in her appearance at the Meyers’ Spanish-style home, located in a gated community near the J. Paul Getty Museum. Tickets started at $2,500 per person, and about 150 were expected.

“This is not a spectator sport. Barack cannot do this alone,” the First Lady said. “That was never a promise.”

She made several quips, including a joke about the Los Angeles traffic at the time of a presidential visit, so frequent they have now taken on a name: Obamajam. “We always find that traffic here in L.A. is fine,” she deadpanned.

Meyer and his wife, Wendy, delivered introductory remarks. Barry Meyer urged guests to appreciate “a country that doesn’t dictate who you can and can’t marry” and praised the U.S. for “aiming more carefully now, and firing less.”

The First Lady, who changed her outfit from the earlier event, spoke from a small stage in a white tent set up near the Meyers’ swimming pool. Among the guests in the crowd were Nicole Avant, former Ambassador to the Bahamas, and her husband, Ted Sarandos of Netflix, as well as Ann Globe, marketing chief at DreamWorks. The pool reporter noted an interesting detail of the event, a sign that read “Artists for Obama,” with the names John Baldessari, Frank Gehry, Jasper Johns, Ed Ruscha, Ellsworth Kelly and Richard Serra. Gehry hosted a fundraiser for the Obama campaign last week.

“As president, you are going to get all kinds of advice,” Michelle Obama told the crowd, prompting one person in the crowd to utter “Mmm Hmm.” Her husband has, on occasion, made the same point, something very familiar to a show biz crowd with no shortage of opinions on how things should be done.

Her complete remarks from the Stefani event, followed by those at the Meyers’ home, are below: