INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -
Sen. Joe Donnelly will fly home to Indiana aboard Air Force One with Donald
Trump on Wednesday to catch the president’s speech pitching a federal tax
“It’s an honor to
welcome President Trump to Indiana, and I hope he has an opportunity to hear
directly from Hoosiers on an issue that impacts not only our families but
our economy,” Donnelly said in a statement Tuesday.
The trip is a
continuation of a campaign by Trump’s administration that is alternately
attempting to woo and strong-arm Donnelly into supporting the GOP’s tax cut
Donnelly is one of
three vulnerable Senate Democrats up for re-election in 2018 who represent
states that Trump won. Earlier this month, Donnelly joined Sens. Heidi
Heitkamp of North Dakota and Joe Manchin of West Virginia for a working
dinner with Trump at the White House focused on the Republican tax overhaul.
Last week, Vice
President Mike Pence traveled home to Indiana to similarly pressure Donnelly
during a speech in Anderson.
“Indiana needs this
tax cut. Hardworking Hoosiers need this tax cut,” Pence said to Donnelly,
who was in attendance. “So Joe, let’s decide today we’re going to get this
tax cut done and we’re going to get it done together.”
The Democrat has
mostly brushed it off and says he’s willing to work with Trump.
“I’ve said all
along that I support a tax cut for the middle class, a tax effort that’s
focused on creating more jobs and opportunities,” Donnelly said after
Trump is set to
speak at 3 p.m. Wednesday at the Indiana State Fairgrounds and is expected
to outline parts of his tax overhaul plan.
will be in attendance, Republican Gov. Eric Holcomb won’t.
Same goes for
Republican Rep. Todd Rokita, a candidate in the GOP Senate primary, who is
vying for a chance to unseat Donnelly in 2018. Rokita has based his campaign
largely around an appeal to Trump voters.
“Rep. Rokita looks
forward to hearing President Trump outline his plans for bold tax reform. As
of now, he will watch President Trump’s speech from DC as the House is
expected to have late afternoon votes on Wednesday,” campaign spokesman Tim
says he has a prior commitment to attend a Naval Seal Foundation event in
Chicago. The Republican governor, who served in the Navy, says the annual
dinner has been on his schedule for months.
Rep. Luke Messer,
another candidate in the GOP Senate primary, will also not be flying to
Indiana aboard Air Force One, though his campaign says the congressman plans
on attending the speech.
“Of course I’ll be
there. I’m excited to have President Trump in Indiana to discuss his tax
plan,” Messer said in a statement. “American workers need a raise and I look
forward to working with the President to make sure they get one.”