Aug 3, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Obama throws support behind 118 candidates in first wave of endorsements

Obama speaking at an event

Photo: Zahim Mohd/NurPhoto via Getty Images

Former President Barack Obama on Monday endorsed 118 candidates running for office in November, including 52 campaigning for the House and Senate.

Why it matters: Obama consistently rates as one of the Democratic Party's most popular figures and is starting to campaign more aggressively after staying on the sidelines for much of the primary season. His first wave of endorsements is aimed at keeping the Democratic majority in the House and winning back the Senate, in addition to shaping state offices ahead of this year's redistricting.

What he's saying:

"Together, these candidates will help us redeem our country’s promise by sticking up for working class people, restoring fairness and opportunity to our system, and fighting for the good of all Americans — not just those at the top. They make me optimistic not just about our party’s chances in November, but about our country’s future long after that."
— Barack Obama in a Medium post

Details: Obama's endorsements include Democratic challengers running for the Senate against Republican incumbents in Colorado, Iowa, Maine, North Carolina and South Carolina.

  • He also heavily targeted Texas, which could be a presidential swing state in November, with a total of 27 endorsements in national and state House races.
  • Obama is so far not endorsing Senate candidates in more conservative states like Montana, Kentucky and Georgia, the New York Times notes.

What to watch: A second set of endorsements is planned for states whose primaries have yet to be held.

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