Barack Obama Confronts Protester During President Joe Biden Fundraiser

As the United States nears the 2024 presidential election, sitting POTUS Joe Biden has kicked up fundraising and campaign efforts in hopes of reelection. On Thursday night (March 28), the 81-year-old invited former presidents Barack Obama and Bill Clinton to Radio City Music Hall in New York City to rally support.

Hosted by Mindy Kaling with a conversation moderated by Stephen Colbert, the fundraising event hosted special guests including House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, Queen Latifah, Lizzo, Cynthia Erivo, and more according to NBC News. A financially successful affair, the program raised more than $26 million for Biden’s campaign. Tickets for the star-studded gathering started at $250, with the largest contributions reaching up to half a million dollars.

Pro-Palestinian demonstrators hold up a sign outside Radio City Music Hall during President Joe Biden‘s fundraiser on March 28, 2024 in New York City. Biden will be joined by former presidents Bill Clinton and Barack Obama at the fundraiser.

Alex Kent/Getty Images

Despite having supporters, Biden and the other politicians in attendance were countered by protestors opposing the President’s approach to the deadly violence in Palestine where, according to TIME Magazine, more than 30,000 Gazans have died since it began in October 2023, mostly women and children

Rolling Stone reported, that as Obama spoke to the “realities of the presidency,” a protestor interrupted the event from inside of the venue.

Barack Obama, Joe Biden, and Bill Cinton

Former US President Barack Obama (L) and former US President Bill Clinton (R) cheer for US President Joe Biden during a campaign fundraising event at Radio City Music Hall in New York City on March 28, 2024. 

Brendan Smialowski / AFP; BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images

“It is also possible for us to say we unequivocally support the people of Israel and their ability to live and raise families and so forth, which is what Joe’s position has been, and it is also possible for us to have our hearts broken — watching innocent people being killed and trying to manage through that in a way that ultimately leads to both people being able to live in peace side by side. So that is not an easy task,” explained the 62-year-old.

At this point, the objector chimed in, with Obama responding, “You can’t just talk and not listen… That’s what the other side does.” He added, “It is possible for us to understand that it is possible to have moral clarity and have deeply held beliefs, but still recognize that the world is complicated and it is hard to solve these problems.”

According to a December 2023 New York Times/Siena College poll reported by the Times, 57% of voters between 18 and 29 years old do not approve of President Biden’s handling of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with 46% saying they would trust former President Donald Trump to do a better job.

The data is collected from of a surveyed group of 1,016 registered voters nationwide from Dec. 10-14 of last year.