President Obama secured his second term last year; now, he's moving on to helping congressional Democrats. Mr. Obama will hold at least 14 fundraising events this year for Democrats running for Congress in 2014, CBSNews.com has confirmed.
The president will attend at least six events for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee (the Senate Democrats' campaign arm), including five outside of Washington. He'll do the same for the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (House Democrats' campaign arm). Additionally, the president will appear at two joint fundraising events benefiting both groups. DCCC Chairman Steve Israel was told of the commitment earlier this week.
Currently, Democrats hold a 10-seat advantage over Republicans in the Senate, including the two independents who caucus with the Democrats. On the House side, Democrats need to win 17 seats to take back the majority. Building up the Democratic Party in both chambers would make the president's pursuit of his second-term agenda a bit easier.
The schedule represents a bigger commitment than congressional Democrats saw from the president in the last midterm election -- in 2009, Mr. Obama attended three events for the DCCC and DSCC, according to CBS News' Mark Knoller. He also attended a handful of events for individual congressional candidates that year. In 2010, Mr. Obama attended 12 events for the two organizations combined.
In the 2012 cycle, the president was almost entirely focused on his own re-election. In 2011, Mr. Obama attended three events for the DCCC and DSCC, compared with 67 events for his re-election campaign. In 2012, he attended 153 fundraisers for the Obama Victory Fund and none specifically for the congressional campaign arms.