Obama to hit campaign trail in Ohio, California

Obama to hit campaign trail in Ohio, California
© Getty

Former President Obama will make his first campaign appearances of the 2018 midterm cycle in the coming weeks as he travels to Ohio and California to back Democratic candidates attempting to unseat Republican incumbents.

The New York Times reports that Obama will appear alongside seven Orange County, Calif., Democrats who are challenging Republicans in districts where Democratic nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonForget the spin: Five unrefuted Mueller Report revelations Former senators launching effort to help Dems win rural votes Biden's announcement was a general election message, says political analyst MORE successfully topped President TrumpDonald John TrumpForget the spin: Five unrefuted Mueller Report revelations Lara Trump: Merkel admitting migrants 'one of the worst things that ever happened to Germany' Financial satisfaction hits record high: survey MORE in the 2016 presidential election.

ADVERTISEMENT

The former president will also appear alongside Ohio gubernatorial nominee Richard CordrayRichard Adams CordrayThe road to the White House still goes through Ohio Rep. Tim Ryan announces presidential run Sherrod Brown says he will not run for president MORE, the former head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, as Cordray seeks the seat currently held by term-limited Gov. John Kasich (R).

A spokeswoman for Obama's office told the Times that Obama would be active “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," Katie Hill added to the Times.

The spokeswoman added in an email to The Hill that Obama is scheduled to appear in Orange County on Saturday and added that the former president plans to campaign in California, Illinois, Ohio and Pennsylvania ahead of the midterms.

Democrats need to pick up 23 House seats and two Senate seats to retake both chambers of Congress in November, while the party also faces a disadvantage in statehouses nationwide.

The Senate is a long shot for the party as they try to pick up the two seats while defending 10 in states that Trump won in 2016.

Some centrist Democrats, including Montana Sen. Jon TesterJonathan (Jon) Tester20 Dems demand no more money for ICE agents, Trump wall Overnight Energy: Bipartisan Senate group seeks more funding for carbon capture technology | Dems want documents on Interior pick's lobbying work | Officials push to produce more electric vehicle batteries in US Bipartisan senators want 'highest possible' funding for carbon capture technology MORE (Mont.) and Sen. Heidi HeitkampMary (Heidi) Kathryn HeitkampFormer senators launching effort to help Dems win rural votes Pro-trade groups enlist another ex-Dem lawmaker to push for Trump's NAFTA replacement Pro-trade group targets 4 lawmakers in push for new NAFTA MORE (N.D.), have said that they do not expect and have not asked for 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,” Tester told The Hill this week, referring to his GOP challenger.

“He threatened to campaign against me once, so I don’t think he’s coming out there,” added Heitkamp.