Ellison's Must Read of the Day

Ellison must read
September 16, 2014

My must read of the day is, "Carney: Midterms to be tough for Democrats," in Politico:

Former White House press secretary Jay Carney predicted on Sunday the November midterm elections are going to be tough for Democrats.

"It’s not going to be a good year for Democrats by definition," Carney said on CNN's "State of the Union." "The sixth year is always particularly bad for a president’s party."

There isn’t an outcome in November that people will say is great for Democrats, he said, except if they barely hold on to control of the Senate and don’t lose many House seats.

The midterm elections seem increasingly favorable to Republicans. Nearly everyone, from analysts to Obama’s campaign guru, acknowledges that.

Democrats have a problem, but to hear that from the former White House spokesperson is noteworthy.

It wasn’t long ago Carney stood in the White House briefing room and proclaimed, "the Democratic Party is not going to lose control of the Senate."

It was barely four months ago when Carney stood in the same spot and told the press that the president was focused on three things to help his party in the midterms. One of the three was turnout.

"Midterms, as all you expert political reporters know, are about turnout, getting the base out," Carney said. "And no one is better at doing that than President Obama."

Press Secretary Carney’s rationale for why Democrats would be successful was largely two-fold: their message was strong and resonated with the American public, and they had the very best motivator, Obama, to help get the base out.

His recent admission blames logistics for the Democrats poor outlook. It’s turnout, they have to defend so many seats, etc. etc. But the success he predicted in May was based on the idea that the president could turnout the base like no one else in the party—Carney’s new stance would seem to imply the president’s failing on that front, in a subtle way Carney admits what recent polls have told us—no one, including people who make up "key parts of the Obama coalition," is pleased with this president.