WASHINGTON (CNN) - Call him the party guy. President Barack Obama is in the middle of a two-week period full of fundraisers and campaign events to help out fellow Democrats as campaign season enters the home stretch this year.
The president headlines a major fundraiser for the Democratic National Committee Tuesday in New York City. The dinner and the rally at the Mandarin Hotel in Columbus Circle is expected to rake in somewhere between $2 to 3 million, according to a Democratic source. Obama was the main attraction at a similar event for the DNC last Thursday in San Francisco, which a party source says brought in around $3 million.
The two events could help out the national party, which is trailing the Republicans in the fundraising race. As of the beginning of September, the DNC reported $15 million cash on hand, with debt of more than $5 million. The Republican National Committee reported $21 million in the bank, as of September 1, with no debt. On Tuesday, the RNC reported bringing in $8.74 million in September. The DNC has yet to release its September fundraising numbers.
"The White House has already made it clear that it will take an active role in the midterm elections," CNN Political Editor Mark Preston said. "Over the next year, expect to see the president crisscrossing the country to raise money for the Democratic Party and individual House and Senate candidates. There is a lot on the line for the president. He will shoulder some of the blame if Democrats suffer great losses in 2010."
The DNC is event is one of two fundraisers Obama's headlining today. He's also the main attraction at a event for Bill Owens, the Democratic candidate in a special election this November for New York's 23rd Congressional District. A new poll indicates that because of a split on the right, there are Republican Party and Conservative Party candidates in the contest, the Democrats could take over a congressional district they haven't won in generations. The election in the three-way race is to fill a vacant seat that opened up after nine-term Republican Rep. John McHugh stepped down after being confirmed as Secretary of the Army.
On Wednesday, Obama joins Governor Jon Corzine on the campaign trail in New Jersey. The Democratic incumbent is facing a tough re-election this year. Wednesday's event will be the second time the president will stump for Corzine. New Jersey is one of just two states holding gubernatorial contests this year. The other state is Virginia, where the Democratic incumbent, Gov. Tim Kaine, is term-limited and can't run for re-election.
Obama is scheduled to join the Democratic candidate in Virginia, Creigh Deeds, next week. It will be the second campaign appearance with Deeds, who trails his Republican rival in recent polls by 8 to 9 points.
While both races focus on state issues and the candidates themselves, they are also seen as the first test at the ballot box, or referendum, on how Obama's doing as president.
"Obama won last year by boosting turnout among key Democratic groups, including young voters," says CNN Polling Director Keating Holland. "If the Democrats are going to have any success in 2010, they will have to do that again when Obama's name is not on the ballot. This year's elections are an early test of whether that is possible."
The president is also personally helping out Democrats who face tough re-elections next year. On Friday, Obama headlines fundraisers for Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick and Sen. Chris Dodd of Connecticut, both of whom have their work cut out for them to win re-election in 2010. On Monday, the president will be the main attraction at a joint fundraiser for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee and the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, which are both in better financial shape than the national party and gearing up to assist party candidates in next year's crucial midterm elections.
Follow Paul Steinhauser on Twitter: @psteinhausercnn