Former President Obama is going to make his first campaign appearances in the 2018 midterm cycle soon as he travels through Ohio and California to support Democratic candidates running to unseat terrible Republican incumbents.
The New York Times says that Obama will appear with seven Orange County, California Democrats challenging Republicans in districts where the Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton beat President Trump in the 2016 election.
The former president is also set to appear alongside Ohio governor nominee Richard Cordray, the ex-head for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, while Cordray seeks the seat held by term-limited Governor John Kasich (R).
A spokesperson for Obama’s office informed the Times that Barack Obama would be involved “in local, down-ballot races to build the Democratic Party’s bench.”
“This moment in our country is too perilous for Democratic voters to sit out,” said Katie Hill to the Times.
She added in an email sent to The Hill that Obama will appear in Orange County Saturday and said that the former president will campaign in California, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Illinois ahead of the 2018 midterms.
Democrats need to gain 23 House seats and two seats in the Senate to retake Congress in November, and the party also has a big disadvantage in the statehouses nationwide.
The US Senate is a real long shot for the Democrats as they try to gain the two seats while they defend 10 in states that Donald Trump won back in 2016.
Some centrist Democrats, like Montana Senator Jon Tester and Senator Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.), have insisted that they do not really want Obama’s support.
“We’re not going to use any surrogates. Surrogates are fine but we don’t need them. The race is myself and Matt Rosendale and that’s the way we want to keep it,” said Tester to The Hill, referring to his Republican challenger.
“He threatened to campaign against me once, so I don’t think he’s coming out there,” said Heitkamp.