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Illustration: Courtesy of DNC

The Democratic National Committee is trying to pump up President Biden and the party’s political agenda with a nationwide bus tour featuring mayors, governors and members of Congress, Axios has learned.

Why it matters: The tour comes as lawmakers in both parties gear up for a messaging war ahead of the 2022 midterms. It will also coincide with Congress' August recess — when members of the House and Senate will already be back in their districts.

  • Axios reported Sunday that Republicans believe inflation, crime and illegal immigration are shaping up as issues that will help them regain at least one congressional majority next year.
  • The “Build Back Better Tour” will traverse more than 10 states, touting Biden's legislative successes while attacking Republicans for voting against his $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief plan and painting them as an impediment to the needs of everyday Americans.
  • It will also come on the heels of another expected victory for Biden: passage of the $1.2 trillion bipartisan infrastructure package, expected Tuesday.

Details: The tour will kick off on Thursday, starting with an event in Virginia with former Democratic Gov. Terry McAuliffe, who is running again for governor in the state, before traveling across the South, Mountain West, Midwest and Northeast.

  • Other surrogates include Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak, Rep. Joaquin Castro (D-Texas), former Housing Secretary Julián Castro, San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg and Tucson Mayor Regina Romero.
  • Axios was told the DNC plans to focus its onward messaging on Biden's plans for job creation, tax cuts for middle-class families and lower health care costs.

What they're saying: “[T]he DNC is hitting the road to make sure everybody knows that the ‘D’ in Democrats stands for ‘deliver,’” said Democratic National Committee chair Jaime Harrison.

  • “We know there is still work to be done and the DNC’s ‘Build Back Better’ bus tour will remind people across the country that it is Democrats who are delivering results for the American people — no thanks to Republicans.”

Go deeper

Oct 17, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Congress begins yearend sprint

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The House and Senate face an onslaught of deadlines key to fulfilling members' campaign promises and keeping the government afloat as they return from recess this week.

Why it matters: The next few weeks will be pivotal to enacting President Biden's agenda — and determining how the Democratic Party fares in the midterm elections.

RNC woos Texas Latinos

A pro-Trump protester in Austin, Texas, after Joe Biden's victory. Photo: Sergio Flores/AFP via Getty Images

The Republican National Committee is working to court more conservative Hispanic voters in south Texas, even as the state's GOP majority uses redistricting to blunt demographic changes that should be empowering Hispanic representation and helping Democrats.

Driving the news: The RNC is opening a Hispanic community center in San Antonio on Monday. It's the third such outreach center the party has opened in south Texas this year.

Biden meeting with key House Democrats

President Biden. Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

President Biden is hosting two separate in-person meetings with moderate and progressive House members at the White House on Tuesday as infrastructure negotiations continue, White House officials told Axios.

Why it matters: This is the latest in the president’s efforts to appease the more volatile parts of his party’s coalition as Democrats wrangle over how to cut his social spending proposal down from $3.5 trillion to closer to $2 trillion.