The Democratic Panic

October 23, 2014

There seems to be a serious disconnect in messaging between the White House and Democrats trying to win 2014 Senate seats.

After President Obama, suffering from sagging approval ratings, gave vulnerable Democrats a headache by declaring his "policies are on the ballot" this year, he followed up by telling Rev. Al Sharpton Monday that those same Democrats are his staunchest supporters.

"The bottom line is, though, these are all folks who vote with me--they have supported my agenda in Congress," he said. "So, this isn't about my feelings being hurt. These are folks who are strong allies and supporters of me, and I tell them, I said you know what? You do what you need to win. I will be responsible for making sure that our voters turn out."

He is right about them supporting his agenda, though. According to Roll Call, every Democrat running for re-election in 2014 voted with Obama at least 90 percent of the time in 2013. Sen. Mark Udall (D., Colo.) made the panel of Meet the Press laugh when he said that at the White House, "the last person they want to see coming is me." Udall voted with Obama 99 percent of the time in 2013.

Incumbents like Sen. Mary Landrieu (D., La.), Kay Hagan (D., N.C.), Mark Begich (D., Alaska), Mark Warner (D., Va.), and Mark Pryor (D., Ark.) are also struggling to show off their anti-Obama bona fides, but the facts are the facts. If the White House has publicly backed legislation, they've almost surely backed it as well.

Too bad for them, Obama's approval rating is badly underwater in all their states. In fact, the same can be said for all but seven states in the country.