WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama will return to the campaign trail next month, heading to California for a pair of fundraisers for Democratic congressional candidates.
The April 3 events will kick off what is expected to be a robust effort by Obama to support Democrats in next year's midterm elections. For Obama, winning back Democratic control of the House of Representatives and holding his party's majority in the Senate in 2014 would give him more opportunities to pass legislation Republicans oppose.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi will also attend next month's San Francisco fundraisers, according to an invitation obtained by The Associated Press. The two events will raise money for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.
Congressional Republicans have criticized Obama for being more focused on getting Democrats elected than on seeking bipartisan solutions to the nation's problems. Obama sought to dispel that notion this week during private meetings with lawmakers on Capitol Hill, though he is unlikely to have changed many minds — particularly given that he has made no secret of his desire to see Democrats overtake Republicans in the House.
"I would expect that Nancy Pelosi is going to be Speaker again pretty soon," he told House Democrats during their party retreat last month.
Democratic officials have said the president plans to headline at least 14 fundraisers this year for the party's House and Senate candidates. Some of the events will be in Washington, but most will be held around the country.
Vice President Joe Biden and first lady Michelle Obama are also expected to hold campaign events for Democrats in the coming months.
During Obama's first term, some Democrats griped that the president didn't do enough to help the party's congressional candidates, particularly ahead of the 2010 midterms. Those elections saw Republicans win control of the House, an advantage they have used to stymie Obama's agenda.
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