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The National Republican Senatorial Committee today blasted President Barack Obama for raising cash for Sen. Barbara Boxer in California before traveling to monitor progress to contain oil leaking from a well in the Gulf of Mexico.

The Gulf trip, announced today, comes as the administration faces increased criticism for not responding quickly enough to help stop the leak and clean up the oil.

Obama will head to Louisiana from his home in Chicago on Friday. But first he will hobnob with donors contributing up to $17,500 at tonight's San Francisco fundraisers for Boxer and the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee. The events include a reception at the Fairmont Hotel and a dinner at the home of philanthropists Ann and Gordon Getty. Tomorrow he will tour a Fremont solar panel manufacturing plant that received aid from a Recovery Act loan.

NRSC spokeswoman Amber Marchand said in a statement that putting off the Gulf trip until later in the week "comes at a special cost for residents of the Gulf Coast region who want the president's full attention on this enormous problem."

"President Obama and Barbara Boxer's hypocrisy is astonishing. In the wake of this ongoing national crisis, why didn't the Democrats reschedule his fancy fundraiser with the billionaire oil heirs and allow the President to direct his full attention toward the massive disaster that is plaguing the Gulf Coast?" Marchand added.

Representatives from the White House, the DSCC and the Boxer campaign could not immediately be reached for comment.



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