Is there any explanation other than Barack Obama’s ego for why he refuses to leave Senate Democrats alone in the upcoming election?
Fox News reports this like it is a matter of ego, under the headline, “GOP favor? Obama says embattled Dems ‘strong allies’ who ‘supported my agenda.’” I wonder if there is some other explanation.
The president, during a radio interview on Monday, claimed Democratic candidates who are avoiding him on the campaign trail nevertheless are “strong allies” who have “supported my agenda in Congress.”
The comments once again provide GOP ad-makers with fodder to tie Democrats to the unpopular president. This comes after Obama declared several weeks ago “every single one” of his policies is on this year’s ballot. And like last time, Republicans quickly parroted the president’s latest remarks.
“All of the Dem candidates running from Obama ‘are all folks who vote with’ & ‘have supported’ his agenda,” Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus tweeted, as his press shop dutifully circulated Obama’s comments.
The president addressed the issue on Al Sharpton’s radio show, as he tried to explain why he was staying away from some races.
“A lot of the states that are contested this time are states that I didn’t win,” Obama said. “And so some of the candidates there — it is difficult for them to have me in the state because the Republicans will use that to try to fan Republican turnout.”
He added: “The bottom line is, though — these are all folks who vote with me, they have supported my agenda in Congress.”
He listed several agenda items, from minimum wage increases to infrastructure spending, and said Democrats were on the “right side” of those debates, with him.
“This isn’t about my feelings being hurt,” Obama said. “These are folks who are strong allies and supporters of me.”
So one possibility here is that Obama is simply too driven to advocate for himself that he is incapable of giving the Democrats any cover by leaving them alone and not mentioning them.
But, as is noted in the video, in one instance these were prepared remarks. They came from the teleprompter. So the statements would have been vetted by a group, presumably.
Another possibility is that, even though Obama is unpopular, the Democrats still fear low turnout. Even though Obama’s statements are a problem to those who don’t like him (which is many people), he still wants as many Democrats as possible to vote. So he felt he had to remind them to support his fellow Democrats.
This does not seem too likely to me. Probably the Senate Democrats would rather find their own way to draw out Democratic voters rather than to have President Obama provide their opposition free sound bites to use against them.
Another possibility: Is there a power struggle going on within the Democratic Party? Perhaps Obama and his handlers feel threatened by the resurgence of Hillary and other Democratic powers that want to displace him now that he has lost much of his popularity.
Perhaps the Chicago-Jarrett wing of the party is feeling defensive.