"Alexi is my friend. I know his character. I know how much he loves this country. I know how committed he is to public service for all the right reasons," the president said. "I appreciate his strong sense of advocacy for ordinary Americans. He's not doing this to help the lobbyists. He's not doing it to help special interests."
The $1 million haul is a blessing for Giannoulias who has had cash troubles throughout his campaign. During a fund raising period between April and the end of June Giannoulias’ team only raised $900,000. That’s less than half of what his opponent, Mark Kirk took in during the period. He reported $2.3 million.
Obama's fund raiser for Giannoulias was just one of three fund raising events the president attended while in town Thursday. He also reportedly took in about $1.5 million for the Democratic National Committee when he appeared at a $250-a-head event at the Chicago Cultural Center and at a $30,000-a-head event at Democrat Neil Bluhm's house.