Already, the Vice President has begun implementing state and local strategies. Last weekend, he surprised volunteers and campaign aides for Josh Shapiro’s gubernatorial campaign in Pennsylvania with a visit. White House aides said the campaign had asked Harris to hold off and build momentum in a very close race in the state.
“Who is the governor of this state will make a difference,” Harris told the crowd. The General Assembly… [we’ve] It has to be replaced and a pro-majority General Assembly has to be elected.
That message echoed ones he has shared for generations nationally, and the visit was part of what Harris’ aides and Democrats in state-focused organizations have sought to find ways to protect abortion rights. Seen as a necessary step.
For weeks, Harris has held meetings with lawmakers in states where abortion rights are, or will be, heavily restricted. Those meetings have been a mix of listening sessions and opportunities to outline commitments that will help the administration push back against sanctions.
But the next chapter of his strategy will be more aggressive. White House aides said the vice president would specifically target red and purple states to call out “Republican extremism” on issues like abortion. On Monday, Harris will visit Indiana, as the state begins a special legislative session on abortion, the first in the nation since then. Roe v. Wade was reversed last month. The White House says she will meet with abortion rights advocates and state lawmakers during her trip.
On a parallel track, the White House has also taken several executive actions to try and protect access to the abortion pill and to give additional protections to abortion providers, as well as those seeking the procedure. Cross state boundaries. But Harris, President Joe Biden and other Democratic leaders have emphasized that the main remedy for the court’s decision is to elect more Democratic lawmakers who can change the laws on the books.
Harris’ direct involvement in local and state elections is something Democrats in organizations focused on in those races have asked top Democrats for years.
“If the vice president is willing and interested in ballot fundraising, we’d be happy to welcome it,” Jessica Post, president of the Democratic Legislative Campaign Committee, said in an interview. “We continue to trail our Republican counterparts. So it’s going to be a big deal for us to have a major leader in our party help fundraise there.
Democrats say Harris is uniquely qualified to push herself as the first female vice president and a former state and local elected official. Allies and attendees of Harris’ legislative meetings say she draws on that experience to emphasize that she “instinctively understands the stakes of state and local elections on abortion policy.”
“She’s kind of staying in the field and just pushing this change to make sure Democrats pay attention to it,” said David Turner, communications director for the Democratic Governors Association. So we’ve focused a lot on federal elections. “We’ve seen results in some key states about what can happen when we lose a state legislature or a governor or an attorney general.”
Already, Democrats say they’ve seen an increase in money in races across the country as a result of the Supreme Court decision. A DLCC official said it had two of its best online fundraising days in the 48 hours since the decision came down, nearly quadrupling what it raised last month.
The DLCC also doubled its new donors during the second quarter of this year compared to its first (the second quarter included both the publication of the Supreme Court’s draft decision and the final decision). The committee also credits its role in swinging a GOP-held district in New Hampshire in 2021 on the issue of abortion rights, which its independent spending arm made a centerpiece of its campaign.
A DGA aide said the organization raised more than $200,000 that day on June 24. cotton wool was overturned, marking the best day of its two-year run and one of the strongest days in history with more than $900,000 coming in since then.
Meanwhile, Democratic online fundraising portal Act Blue Showing released data. That small-dollar donors gave $20.6 million that day. cotton wool was reversed, “making it Act Blue’s biggest day of the 2022 cycle, raising donations and dollars.” It added that eight of the top ten cycle days for first-time donors occurred in the days after the Supreme Court overturned the decision. cotton woolwhen the draft opinion was published, and after the elementary school shooting in Uvalde, Texas.