Supporters, protesters await Obama in Corona del Mar

Though President Obama's Thursday visit to a breakfast fundraiser in Corona del Mar will be closed to the public, there will be plenty of signs that the Democratic president is visiting a Republican stronghold.

Conservative protesters plan to get their points across with demonstrations, though it was unknown Wednesday night whether the presidential motorcade would pass by them.

"Our goal is to hopefully get enough coverage that other Americans in other communities across the nation will do the same thing when the president visits their community," said Laura Dietz, a Cameo Shores resident who is organizing a protest on Poppy Avenue and East Coast Highway. "Quite honestly, when I found out the president was coming to my precinct, it was too much for us to bear. A group of us decided as citizens to have a civil demonstration to express our displeasure with his policies."

At least one left-leaning organization plans to counter the conservatives with a show of support for Obama.

"We want to tell President Obama that he's welcome in Orange County," said Balboa Island resident Jamshed Dastur, spokesman for South Orange County. "There's the other groups saying he's not welcome here, and we're just here to support him. And although we disagree with him on some grounds, overall, we are happy to support him."

Obama plans to visit the home of Geoffrey and Nancy Stack, who live in a neighborhood west of Cameo Shores. The couple is hosting the morning fundraiser in their sprawling home overlooking Little Corona beach.

Admission starts at $2,500 for breakfast and goes up to $35,800 for those who want to personally greet the president.

The pair have contributed the maximum allowable $10,000 to Obama's campaign, and have contributed more than $440,000 to Democratic candidates and causes in recent years.

Geoffrey Stack is managing director of the Irvine-based development company Sares-Regis Group. Nancy Stack heads their nonprofit, the Cystinosis Research Foundation.


CdM road closures

Police plan to close a small section of CdM's streets ahead of Obama's visit.

From 6 a.m. to noon, the few streets between Morning Canyon and Evening Canyon roads south of East Coast Highway will be closed to vehicular traffic.

Residents of the area will be able to enter and exit with proof of residence.

Commuters can expect some delays along Coast Highway.

This is the president's first visit to the Newport-Mesa area since he spoke at the Orange County Fairgrounds in 2009.

Traditionally, Newport Beach has been a required stop for Republican politicians. Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich visited the Island Hotel in Newport earlier this week. Texas Gov. Rick Perry and Rep. Michele Bachmann also made local stops before eventually withdrawing from the primaries.

Sen. John McCain, the Republican presidential nominee, visited the area twice during the 2008 election.,

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