Oct 24, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Scoop: Democrats deploy Biden and Obama to lock down Pennsylvania

Obama and Biden

Photo: Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images

President Biden and former President Obama will barnstorm the Philadelphia and Pittsburgh areas on Nov. 5 with the party's nominees for Pennsylvania governor and Senate, according to a Democrat with direct knowledge of the plans.

Why it matters: In the final days before the midterms, Democrats are deploying their party's biggest assets in Pennsylvania. The state, which was critical to Biden's 2020 election victory, could determine control of the Senate next year.

  • Lt. Gov. John Fetterman is locked in a close Senate race with Republican Mehmet Oz, while the current attorney general, Josh Shapiro, has maintained a lead over state Sen. Doug Mastriano in the governor's race.

The big picture: While Biden has been forgoing large political rallies that became the signature midterm political move for his predecessors, he has made several trips this year to Pennsylvania, where Fetterman hasn’t shied away from appearing with him.

  • On Oct. 28, Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris will fundraise with Fetterman at a Pennsylvania Democratic Party dinner. Biden visited the state last week as well.
  • Biden flipped Pennsylvania from red to blue in 2020 and feels like he has a fingertip feel for the state, where he based his campaign.

But Biden has avoided other states where Democratic incumbents are locked in tight races, like in Nevada and Arizona.

  • The president said last week he's gotten "16 or 18" requests to campaign with candidates around the country, but he has no other campaign travel scheduled this week aside from Pennsylvania.
  • Obama has already announced plans to campaign in Atlanta, Detroit and Milwaukee.

Between the lines: Sen. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), who is up for re-election, did appear at a non-political event with Biden when he dedicated a national monument in Camp Hale, Colorado, earlier this month.

What we’re watching: With two weeks before the election, Biden has yet to headline a big political rally.

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