Obama to Spend Birthday in Chicago

Visit includes birthday party, three fundraisers, tour of Chicago Ford plant

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    NEW YORK - AUGUST 04: Overview of the President Barack Obama wax figure at Madame Tussauds' celebration of President Barack Obama's Birthday at Madame Tussauds on August 4, 2009 in New York City. (Photo by Andrew H. Walker/Getty Images)

    President Barack Obama is coming home for this birthday.

    The president will fly in Wednesday to Chicago -- his 49th birthday -- and spend the night, though there's no official word if he'll stay at his Hyde Park home.

    Obama will be having a b-day fete at the home of real estate mogul Neil Bluhm on Wednesday night, according to gossip columnist Michael Sneed.  Wrangling an invite to the party requires a $30,000 donation to the Democratic National Committee.

    His schedule Thursday includes three fundraisers and a tour of the Ford Plant on the city's South Side. One of the fundraisers is for Illinois Treasurer Alexi Giannoulias, who is running for the president's former U.S. Senate seat.

    Lynn Sweet from the Chicago Sun-Times reported that the president hopes to raise $2 million for Giannoulias and the Democratic National Committee.

    This week in a conference call with David Plouffe -- the former Obama campaign chairman now advising the Giannoulias campaign -- Plouffe dismissed there would be any fallout for the Giannoulias fundraiser if the Obama visit coincides possibly with a verdict in the Rod Blagojevich corruption trial.

    It won't be a family trip. Michelle and Sasha Obama will be off to Spain next week and daughter Malia is heading to sleep away camp.