Get ready for the return of Barack Obama in the 2018 midterms. Most presidents stay out of politics after they finish their terms, but not Obama. Such is his arrogance.
But not everyone wants his help. Much to his embarrassment.
As reported by The Hill: Former President Obama is set to dive into the midterm elections next week with a speech in Illinois where he is expected to urge Democrats across the country to vote — addressing a problem that plagued the party in 2016.
Obama has kept a low political profile since leaving office, but sources familiar with his plans say he will soon hit the campaign trail to help Democrats in their quest to take back the House, protect vulnerable Senate incumbents and win state legislative races.
The former president will kick off his push by delivering a speech at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign on Friday. In the weeks ahead, Obama will also campaign in California, Illinois, Ohio and Pennsylvania, a person familiar with his schedule said.
Not all Democrats want Obama’s help.
Democratic candidates running in states that President Trump won by double digits in 2016 would prefer that the former president stay far away.
Some Democrats in pro-Trump states, such as Sens. Bob Casey Jr. (Pa.), Debbie Stabenow (Mich.) and Sherrod Brown (Ohio), say they hope Obama will campaign for them.
Others, such as Sens. Jon Tester (Mont.) and Heidi Heitkamp (N.D.), want to keep the race locked on the battle between themselves and their state rivals, fearing a high-profile surrogate like Obama could distract from the strategy.
“We’re not going to use any surrogates. Surrogates are fine but we don’t need them. The race is myself and Matt Rosendale and that’s the way we want to keep it,” Tester told The Hill, referring to his GOP challenger.
Asked if she thought Obama might show up in North Dakota, Heitkamp said: “Nope, no.”
“He threatened to campaign against me once so I don’t think he’s coming out there,” she said.
While the former president remains extremely popular with the Democratic base, especially among African-American voters, Democrats fear his entrance into some battleground states could inadvertently rev up conservatives and pro-Trump voters.