Democratic Senate Candidate Mandela Barnes called on President Barack Obama for help after he began slipping in the polls for his Wisconsin Senate race against incumbent Republican Sen. Ron Johnson, Politico reported Thursday.
Members of Barnes’ political campaign reached out to Obama’s team in recent days in hopes of getting the popular former president to make an appearance in the final days before election day, the outlet reported. Obama isn’t the only high-level Democrat who may appear in Wisconsin soon, however, as Vice President Kamala Harris and Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-VT, are reportedly likely to make the trip.
Recent polling shows Johnson having a 6-point lead over Mandela in the final weeks before Election Day. The Wednesday poll from Marquette Law School found that Johnson was entering the final stretch with 52% support from likely voters, while Mandela had 46%.
Johnson and his allies found success in going after Mandela as a soft-on-crime candidate at a time when rates of violent crimes like murder and rape are spiking across the country.
Wisconsin is shaping up to be a key battleground state for not only Congress but also control over the state government. Democratic Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers is nearly tied neck and neck with Republican Tim Michels at 47% and 46% support, respectively.
Sanders’ office would not confirm any specific plans to head toward Wisconsin, however.
“Sen. Sanders believes that in the coming election we need to energize working-class voters and grow turnout,” Sanders adviser Faiz Shakir told Politico. “He intends to play an active role in making that happen.”
Mandela’s call for assistance comes after Congressional Republicans raked in tens of millions in donations between July and September. The Congressional Leadership Fund PAC garnered $73 million in donations through the period, $18 million more than its Democratic counterpart.
The Senate Leadership Fund, the CFL’s counterpart wielded by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, has vowed to spend $190 million on Senate candidates this cycle.