Biden-Harris sets Jan. 6 for first campaign event of 2024

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(WASHINGTON) — President Joe Biden will lay out what he sees as the stakes of the 2024 presidential election — democracy and freedom — in Valley Forge, Pennsylvania, on Jan. 6, his first campaign event of the new year.

“This Saturday will mark the three-year anniversary of when, with encouragement from Donald Trump, a violent mob breached our nation’s Capital. It was the first time in our nation’s history that a president tried to prevent the peaceful transfer of power,” Biden-Harris campaign manager Julie-Chavez Rodriguez told reporters on a call.

Principal deputy campaign manager Quentin Fulks said Valley Forge was selected for its historical significance as it is “the same spot where nearly 250 years ago, our nation’s forefathers transformed a disorganized alliance of colonial militias into a cohesive coalition united in their fight for our democracy, where General Washington united American willpower and went on to lead this nation as commander and as president – before relinquishing power – the ultimate precedent and the experiment of American democracy.”

In Saturday’s speech, Biden is expected to lay out in an official capacity on the campaign trail what he sees as the stakes of the 2024 election as he ramps up toward a likely rematch against former President Donald Trump.

“There, the president will make the case directly that democracy and freedom — two powerful ideas that united the 13 colonies and that generations throughout our nation’s history have fought and died for … remains central to the fight we’re in today,” Fulks said.

Last month, the campaign announced it planned a hiring spree of “thousands of staff dedicated to Team Biden-Harris across the country,” which includes leadership teams in every battleground state by mid-January.

Pennsylvania, one of those battleground states, holds a key pathway to the presidency. In 2020, Biden won by just over 1 point, which helped push him over the finish line to win the Electoral College. Going into 2024, he remains dead even with Trump, according to 538’s latest polling average.

After his Valley Forge stop, as ABC first reported, Biden will then continue to carry this message to Charleston, South Carolina, on Monday. It’s his fourth trip to the Palmetto State as president and his first as a 2024 candidate, having only made stops in key battleground states and fundraisers in Democratic strongholds like California. He’ll deliver remarks at Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, the site of a mass shooting in 2015, where he’ll “talk directly to voters who propelled him to the highest office in the land four years ago,” a campaign rep said.

Prior to Biden’s visit, Vice President Kamala Harris will make her seventh visit to South Carolina on Saturday to speak at the Seventh Episcopal District AME Church before returning for Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Jan. 15, to headline an event at the South Carolina State House.

These visits come as the campaign pushes to attract Black, Latino, women and young voters as Biden’s numbers have begun slipping among these constituencies that the team carried back in 2020.

Asked by reporters if the trips to South Carolina are meant to shore up support among Black voters, Fulks said the trips don’t come from a “place of worry” but from “practicing what we preach.”

Later on in the month, Harris will kick off her official reproductive freedoms tour in Wisconsin on the anniversary of Roe v. Wade on Jan. 22.

“The 2024 field has made clear time and time again that they don’t just accept, they give their full-throated endorsement to Donald Trump’s anti-democratic, anti-freedom rhetoric and actions,” Chavez Rodriguez said, referring to Trump’s fellow GOP presidential candidates. “The choice for the American people in November 2024 will be about protecting our democracy and every American’s fundamental freedoms.”

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