President Trump is ramping up his involvement in the midterm campaign, planning at least ten rallies in the six days before Election Day.
In the last few weeks, Trump has been hitting the campaign trail four nights a week for Republican candidates and engaging with the media on a near daily basis.
Republican strategists have hailed Trump's increasingly active involvement in the elections. Other presidents, they point out, might have sought to keep their party at arm's length because it traditionally loses a slew of seats at this point in the political cycle.
GOP leaders are optimistic about the impact Trump will have on the midterm elections, arguing his presence on the trail could energize the party base and perhaps change the course of the election.
"He is being the most effective I’ve ever seen. One, generating the base, making the argument of what we have been able to achieve and what we can achieve in the future. [He is] making the case each place," House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy told the Washington Examiner.
"Look at what he has generated. It is very difficult to put that many people in a rally. And he has done it time after time after time. Not only does he change the course — and we’ve watched it — surely in the Senate you’ve seen it state by state. But that builds up in the congressional races as well."
Despite relatively low - though improving - approval ratings, the president remains in high demand for imperiled Republicans and those that find themselves in tight elections with little time to convince voters to choose them over their Democratic challengers.
By Thursday, Trump will have headlined 12 "Make America Great Again" rallies for Republican incumbents and candidates for the House and Senate. Trump is planning on doing at least 10 more rallies, which often run well over an hour and attract many thousands of supporters, before the midterm elections. The campaign is planning on an even more intense campaign schedule that could include putting the president on stage twice in one day.
From Oct. 6 to Oct. 23, the president took well over 300 questions from reporters, sat down for at least eight interviews with the media, held a number of unscheduled press conferences, and hosted over 20 public events. Trump himself has said his recent uptick in engaging with the media is due to the midterm elections.
In addition to his public appearances and the media blitz, the president's re-election campaign announced Tuesday it is launching a $6 million advertising campaign Oct. 29 that will run through Election Day in support of Republican candidates. It is also giving the Republican National Committee a direct $3 million cash infusion to help in tight races, potentially where the president can't go himself.
"President Trump energizes our base like no one else. The overwhelming amount of time and money he’s spending is fueling grassroots enthusiasm for all of our candidates. That support has enabled the RNC build our largest field program ever to get out the vote and defy history on Election Day,” RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel said Tuesday.
Trump is ensuring he is the focal point in the 2018 midterm elections and there are signs it is working. Polling shows that Trump is more of a factor in voters' calculus — for better or worse — than previous presidents.
"I think he has been incredibly effective. I think in an awful lot of these races Republicans would not been in as good of shape as they are without him. He has taken a lot of the midterm campaign on his shoulders," Josh Holmes, former chief of staff for Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and political strategist, said.
"The problem that a party in power has during in a midterm is it is extremely difficult to replicate the enthusiasm that a minority party has ... What he has done in the last two months has worked to close that enthusiasm gap and mobilize Republican voters."
McConnell has commended the president for being "willing to go where he needs," but noted that, similarly to the 2006 midterm election race, the president's low approval rating somewhat limits his options for where he can campaign.
The demand for Trump's presence in some GOP races is due to his sky-high approval rating among Republican voters that remains above 90 percent. In those races, like the Texas House and Senate races, the president could prove a serious boon for Republicans. Midterm elections, as McCarthy and Holmes noted, are about rallying the base and getting voters to the ballot box.
One glaring problem for the president is there are parts of the country where the president cannot go, because Republican candidates in toss-up suburban districts do not want to be seen with him. Trump has not traveled to the Pacific Coast, large portions of the Northeast, and major cities like Chicago, where his presence is either unwanted or could tip the scale in favor of the Democratic candidate.
McCarthy doesn't buy that argument. He thinks the president is simply focusing his efforts and using them where he can have the greatest impact.
"No, I don’t believe so," McCarthy said in response to whether Trump's big midterm presence could hurt vulnerable Republicans. "What you’ve watched every state. Just go back to the Troy Balderson race, right? We were down. He comes in [and] he brings attention to the race," adding "it is all about getting turnout now."
Other conservative strategists echo McCarthy's remarks, believing the president's team is making the most efficient use of his time in the final weeks.
"The president is getting involved in this year's midterms in a smart and strategic way: pumping up Republican voters and boosting turnout in deep red states and congressional districts where is still very popular, while steering clear of the more affluent suburbs where he is held in less high regard," Michael Steel, a managing director at Hamilton Place Strategies and former aide to John Boehner when he was House speaker, told the Washington Examiner.
Still, Republicans in purple states face a difficult challenge in how they navigate a party that now belongs to the president while showing voters they are not entirely party-line members of the GOP.
"I think that Republicans running in purple districts are doing a good job of demonstrating values to their constituents to show they aren’t party line Republicans. Voters are very astute and understand that when people are trying to pull wool over their eyes," Holmes said.
"I think the more that Republicans see him on the trail, the better. People that are in districts that have a higher disapproval than others will have to show value in other ways," Holmes said. "Without President Trump, Republicans wouldn’t be anywhere close to where they need to be in the vast majority targeted races."
Conventional wisdom and polling has Democrats taking control of the House in November, but Republican candidates and strategists are looking at local polls that show many races are still within the margin of error. For Republicans to maintain control of the House, they will need many of those races sway in their favor. The party currently holds a 23-seat majority in the House.
Al Weaver contributed to this report.