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No Bearing': White House Downplays Decision to Hold Major Speech at Big-Time Hollywood Donor's Company

"It’s an opportunity to highlight the success of one business and the success that they’re having in creating jobs in Southern California."

HOLLYWOOD, CA - NOVEMBER 16: Film Producer Jeffrey Katzenberg and Marilyn Katzenberg arrives at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' Governors Awards at The Ray Dolby Ballroom at Hollywood & Highland Center on November 16, 2013 in Hollywood, California. Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images

In 2012, DreamWorks Animation CEO Jeffrey Katzenberg spent more than $3 million to get President Barack Obama re-elected. On Tuesday, Obama is delivering an economic address from DreamWorks headquarters in Los Angeles.

Producer Jeffrey Katzenberg and Marilyn Katzenberg arrive at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' Governors Awards, Nov. 16, 2013 in Los Angeles. (Getty Images/Frederick M. Brown)

One has nothing to do with the other, White House spokesman Josh Earnest assured reporters Monday, when asked why a business owned by a major donor was selected as the site for a presidential speech on the economy.

“DreamWorks obviously is a thriving business and is creating lots of jobs in Southern California and the fact of the matter is Mr. Katzenberg’s support for the president’s policies has no bearing on our decision to visit there,” Earnest said, according to a White House pool report. “Rather, it’s an opportunity to highlight the success of one business and the success that they’re having in creating jobs in Southern California.”

Katzenberg contributed $3 million to Obama’s re-election super PAC Priorities USA Action in 2012, according to the Center for Responsive Politics. He also contributed $61,600 to the Democratic National Committee in 2012.

From Sunday through Tuesday, Obama will do a total of seven Democratic Party fundraising events on the West Coast and hold two official presidential speeches, one Monday in San Francisco about immigration reform and another Tuesday in Los Angeles about the economy.

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