Former President Barack Obama endorsed North Carolina Senate Democratic candidate Cheri Beasley on Tuesday as she faces Republican opponent Rep. Ted Budd.
The former two-term Democratic president endorsed Beasley in a video she posted on social media.
“Cheri works hard. She’s honest. And most importantly, she always puts the people first… This is going to be a close race, and we can’t afford to get it wrong.”
— Cheri Beasley (@CheriBeasleyNC) October 25, 2022
“I don’t need to tell you these are challenging times. That’s why we need strong leaders to step forward. Leaders who will do what’s right instead of what’s easy. Leaders who will fight for you,” Obama said in the video.
“That’s why I’m supporting Cheri Beasley for U.S. Senate. Cheri was a public defender, a judge, and the first African American woman to serve as Chief Justice of the North Carolina Supreme Court,” he added.
“Cheri works hard. She’s honest. And most importantly, she always puts people first. In the Senate, Cheri will fight to make healthcare and prescription drugs more affordable and protect our fundamental rights, from the right to vote to a woman’s right to control her own body. This is going to be a close race and we can’t afford to get it wrong,” Obama concluded as he told voters to cast their ballots early or on November 8.
Beasley’s campaign has said it is set to push Obama’s ad across the state in a six-figure ad buy. It is unclear if the former president plans to go to North Carolina to hit the campaign trail with Beasley, although he scheduled to stump for Democrats in Georgia, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Nevada as the midterm elections close in.
Obama’s involvement in the North Carolina Senate race could signify how Democrats feel about the prospects of Republicans taking the Senate and the House of Representatives. In recent weeks, the tide has shifted towards Republicans in polling data as the GOP focuses on economic issues such as record-high inflation.
The race has been close over the election season, and political experts on both sides believe the end result will be decided by a couple of percentage points, according to The Hill.
“North Carolina is a true purple state. Thirty percent of our voters are registered Republicans, 34 [percent] are registered as Democrats, 35 percent are registered as unaffiliated voters,” state Republican Chairman Michael Whatley told the outlet. “Fifty-two to 48 is a landslide in North Carolina.”