Obama to hit campaign trail in Pa. for gubernatorial, Senate candidates

Obama to hit campaign trail in Pa. for gubernatorial, Senate candidates
© Getty Images

Former President Obama will stop in Philadelphia next week to campaign for Pennsylvania’s gubernatorial and Senate candidates, the Pennsylvania Democratic Party announced Friday.

The former president next Friday will stump for Gov. Tom Wolf and Sen. Bob CaseyRobert (Bob) Patrick CaseyGOP wants to pit Ocasio-Cortez against Democrats in the Senate Biden speaking to Dems on Capitol Hill as 2020 speculation mounts: report GOP senators: Trump should not declare border emergency during State of the Union MORE, both of whom are running for reelection, as well as for down-ballot House and state legislative races in a state where Democrats have their sights set on flipping several competitive seats at the state and national level. 


Neither Wolf nor Casey appear to be in significant danger of being ousted.

A Franklin & Marshall College poll released late last month showed Wolf holds a 17-point lead over his Republican challenger state Sen. Scott Wagner. A RealClearPolitics average of polls shows Wolf up 14.7 points. The Cook Political Report lists the race as “Likely Democrat.”

The same Franklin & Marshall College poll showed Casey with a comfortable 13-point lead over Rep. Lou BarlettaLouis (Lou) James BarlettaTrump's most memorable insults and nicknames of 2018 GOP trading fancy offices, nice views for life in minority Casey secures third Senate term over Trump-backed Barletta MORE. RealClearPolitics average has Casey leading by 14.3-point lead over Barletta, and The Cook Political Report lists the race as “Likely Democrat.” 

President TrumpDonald John TrumpBill Kristol resurfaces video of Pence calling Obama executive action on immigration a 'profound mistake' ACLU says planned national emergency declaration is 'clear abuse of presidential power' O'Rourke says he'd 'absolutely' take down border wall near El Paso if he could MORE won Pennsylvania by about 0.7 percent in 2016.

The stop in Philadelphia is the latest in Obama’s whirlwind tour to boost Democratic candidates across the country and attack President Trump and Republican policies.

The former president burst back onto the political scene earlier this month at a speech in Illinois when he issued a blistering rebuke of Trump and the direction of the Republican Party on everything from taxes to relations with Russia to Trump’s response to the neo-Nazi and white supremacist-led rally in Charlottesville in 2017.

He also went to Ohio Thursday to rally with Ohio Democratic gubernatorial candidate Rich Cordray, in which he said Republicans “put up with crazy.” 

Obama long put off returning to the political ring after leaving the White House, wary of nationalizing certain tight races and energizing a depressed GOP base for which he is a foil. However, his reemergence could help a Democratic Party that is still deeply divided and without a clear leader.