Jill Donnelly looks to energize women voters for husband's re-election campaign
SOUTH BEND, Ind. — U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly’s wife is lending her voice to help get her husband re-elected.
Jill Donnelly is leading the Democratic incumbent’s latest push to get more women voters out to the polls in the fall.
“I guess I’m a pretty good voice for him, watching what he does,” said Donnelly. “[Joe has traveled to] all 92 counties last year in the last 3 or 4 years and that’s important for him, hearing from constituents.”
Usually by his side, Jill Donnelly is now out front for her husband.
While his opponent Mike Braun and his strong GOP backing looks to retain control of the senate through his seat, Jill says she’s doing her part through a more grassroots approach.
“A group a couple of months ago got together and we have been hearing across the state women that kept coming up to Joe or myself and asking how they can help?” said Donnelly.
The Donnelly team decided the initiative “Women for Joe” is how they could help.
“We started this past weekend with house parties,” said Donnelly.
Those house parties popped up all over the state and on social media.
Jill says the women participating in this movement have quite a few reasons why they are backing him.
In 2009, then U.S. Representative Joe Donnelly--- voted to pass the Lily Ledbetter Fairpay Act that addressed unfair wage gaps.
And in 2017, he signed on as a co-sponsor of the Paycheck Fairness Act although it hasn’t seen much movement in congress since.
“They see Joe as being that guy who has been there for them and they want to see it continue,” said Donnelly.
The summer is typically when campaign season ramps up.
But Majority Leader Mitch McConnell canceled the U.S. Senate’s August recess.
Jill says she and the team behind “Women for Joe” hope to travel around the state more to get his message out to voters for him.