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Pink is out, 'Glee' star Darren Criss is in at Obama fundraiser

June 05, 2012|By Seema Mehta
  • Darren Criss, left, and Chris Colfer in a scene from "Glee." Criss will appear at a fundraiser at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel for President Obama's reelection campaign.
Darren Criss, left, and Chris Colfer in a scene from "Glee."… (Adam Rose / Fox )

The singer Pink, who was scheduled to headline a fundraiser for President Obama on Wednesday in Beverly Hills, pulled out because she is ill, according to the president’s reelection campaign.

“Glee” star Darren Criss, who plays an openly gay high school student on the hit Fox television series, will perform in her place at the gala, which is aimed at the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community, and comes on the heels of Obama announcing his support of same-sex marriage.

June is Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender pride month, as declared by Obama last week.

“From brave men and women who came out and spoke out, to union and faith leaders who rallied for equality, to activists and advocates who challenged unjust laws and marched on Washington, LGBT Americans and allies have achieved what once seemed inconceivable,” Obama said in his proclamation marking the honor. “This month, we reflect on their enduring legacy, celebrate the movement that has made progress possible, and recommit to securing the fullest blessings of freedom for all Americans.”

The event at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel, along with a dinner the same evening at the home of the show’s creator, is expected to raise as much as $10 million for Obama's campaign.

The fundraiser isn’t the first time that Obama has hosted an event aimed at the gay and lesbian community, having held a number of previous events, including several before his declaration that he personally supports gay marriage rights.

GOP presidential rival Mitt Romney has declared that he holds “hope the issue – as tender and sensitive as the marriage issue is – is not a source of fundraising for either of us.”

Obama and Romney have made a number of fundraising trips to California,  collectively raising more than $60 million from the state’s wealthy donors. Of that sum, Obama has taken a wide majority, with $49 million. On the same day that Obama declared June to be LGBT pride month, Romney was in the middle of a four-day fundraising spree in California.

seema.mehta@latimes.com

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