Democrats moving away from president on key issues?
Political panel weighs in
- Duration 9:15
- Date Apr 23, 2012
Political panel weighs in
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Questions today about whether Democrats are losing faith in the president.
The party took a beating as you know in the 2010 mid term elections and in the last week we have seen a number of Democrats in congress distancing themselves.
From President Obama on Health Care Reform law.
Of course has become a key issue in the 2012 race is also his signature legislative achievement.
Joining me now Bernard Whitman -- former pollster for President Bill Clinton.
Simon constable is a columnist for the Wall Street Journal and Kevin McCullough is a columnist and -- syndicated radio host and the author of no he can't how Barack Obama is dismantling hope and change our guys so.
That this is.
They're just a couple of examples out there but -- -- significant ones Democrats appearing to get more vocal about.
How they dislike the health care law or how they think it was a mistake to do it when it was done.
And the keystone oil pipeline.
Which got 69 Democrats.
Voting with the Republicans on at last week reading a lot of folks to say.
What's happening here white and we had Barney Frank about criticize the health care law last week that this happens -- keystone.
Bernard do you see this is a problem for President Obama.
-- really done and -- most the Democrats he pointed out that have come out.
Against the president Joseph Webb Barney Frank are individuals actually weren't running this year but I will say this.
It is no surprise that Democrats particularly in states like Virginia and West Virginia more conservative Democrats and conservative states.
Are seeking to protect her -- and I think that's fine because the Democratic Party quite frankly strong enough to be able to accept ideology across the centrist -- And I think the health care law is one that does need some improvement in the fact that people are coming out and suggesting alternatives.
Where that law will have to be modified going forward -- -- to find the party is strong enough to withstand that it at the end of the day if Democrats feel that they have to move a little bit to the right -- to get reelected.
And strengthen the Democrat majority in congress and allow for -- -- a second term to be a huge success among favorite.
Does it mean when it when you have outgoing democratic members of congress.
Taking shots at for example the health Carolina does it mean that they are trying to bring in independents -- does -- mean that they are speaking what they believe is the truth.
Because they have no more political stakes.
Maybe this being the Fifth Amendment just frustrated and the elephant in the room or the gorilla in the room what it -- is the job situation the economy the economy is in terrible shape stale.
And I think you know if the economy was in good shape and this was like you know OK it wasn't -- perfect legislation like you sat.
I'm going to be improved upon I don't think anyone will be pointing fingers of President Obama I really think it's the economy and I -- thank.
Well that's because if you got example of north Carolina's Brad Miller who did vote for the health care law who is now saying quote we would all have been better off if congress had dealt with more pressing issues.
And they came back to health care.
Barney Frank coming out and saying Kevin Democrats paid a terrible price for health care.
Jim Webb -- -- that this will be Obama's biggest downside president's Obama's biggest -- at a cost of a lot of credibility.
That's not just people that are running it's people like Elizabeth Warren are trying to take the seat away from a Republican in Massachusetts who is saying that at least portions of obamacare have to be repealed.
And did a lot of people -- are admitting.
We did this all backwards if we were gonna do health care we should have done the economy first it makes common sense you fix the economy get people working.
Suddenly some people have more cash in their pocket to solve their own health care problem.
If you don't address the economy and you don't change the jobs picture the health care situation only gets worse and as we have gone to an implementation.
And implementation of Obama care.
You have seen a greater stress now on the small business community which is necessary.
To build the new jobs so it's completely backwards and it's not it's not unreasonable to.
Have the numbers -- seeking cover those suit 51 plus percent of Americans favor repeal of the -- such -- that there against the -- -- plus favor repeal of the health Caroline here we are more than two years later Bernard let's talk a little bit about keystone oil pipeline.
The Republicans tried to force.
A start on the construction of the bill.
Of the keystone oil pipeline last week and 69 Democrats voted for it in the house they say that they are within a one or two -- of getting it done in the senate as well.
In the congress reject the president's approach and keystone.
What does that say to the president and what -- -- -- to the American people.
Well I think it shows his terrible frustration over rising gas prices but -- real fault of rising gas prices and I think the American public understands that polls show.
Quite clearly that three times as many people.
Blame the oil companies in Middle East nations for taking advantage of situation driving -- gas prices.
Rather than the president but what I think the president has said all along is he is not opposed to keystone he's he was opposed to fast tracking it.
Before the necessary studies were taking place the didn't wanna do -- -- election year in his election year politics to try to play games with the nation's energy -- I don't think we should do that.
He didn't wanna you wanna play election year politics a post fight till after the election that's right and it's funny.
I'm I think the real issue head is -- a -- has -- -- -- that's the definition of a leader who whoever it is they die follows that out in the fall was spent on a big leader.
He has less follow its people on following him back issue and I'm involved a lesson last following him on the health -- issue and that's certainly not falling -- wildly.
-- because remember in the lead up to the health care debate and Nancy Pelosi went on I think it was ABC news and said look you know some people she suggested -- -- -- -- -- their jobs in congress but yet to do the right thing.
You gotta do the right thing for your constituents can't be all about your reelection battle that's been really paraphrase but that was the essence of what she seemed to be saying.
And while that we know what happened in 2010 mid term elections a lot of Democrats -- lose their seats -- I nobody wants it so you think you think now out of it that a change of heart.
It's the definition you use Houston and end the military's what would you go into battle behind this -- with a were you thinking you had a reasonable chance of coming -- a -- I.
And would you go into the election thinking at a reasonable chance of getting -- -- -- -- for what you look it's ironic that people like governor Manchin in West Virginia who were part of the new class of Democrats to command.
Are looking at reelection -- -- saying you've got and I senator we can't do it attached.
To the top of the ticket.
It is presenting a unique problem -- right in in particularly red states where Democrats are holding seats that may be our representative with social.
Values that are kind of represented -- in the culture but not necessarily buying into big governments issues like -- -- or even.
Energy solutions you've got this like identity crisis and mansion saying look.
I have to get reelected in order to continue to do my job -- -- now trying to -- for it but he's just being a good politician.
Does it look ahead.
With all due respects on in the -- the true leaders it is in fact.
Working on the 25.
Straight months of job growth and its president.
Vs two point six million jobs lost under the previous president.
We are making strides forward to issue this election will be decide on the issue of economy and I think.
The president has shown great leadership there we still need to do more.
But to switch directions now in the economy's finally starting to get and his team is something that most independents and certainly -- Democrats are going to of.
I told the sort of thing going off shelves I mean -- -- not and I just barely enough to keep up with population growth that's the problem we need many many -- but -- -- it but they see the number of going down hard and we are under 10% our -- of until they see that never got fewer workers in the workforce remember they drop out of the counting once they've been out of work for so long and if in if we had the same.
Inflatable forces we did in twenty you know in 209 we would have and then unemployment rate close to 12% but.
That does is it that the two issues -- people feel the economy read a fundamental way but that but it's interesting to me that it's it's keystone and its health care there really that we're seeing more Democrats jump ship on.
Because those are very emotional issues immigration -- for that matter but health care very personal issue for people an energy people get fired up about this.
That is wrong when -- if gas goes down at three bucks a gallon or 250 -- would they will get less fired and the Democrats will come back on board.
I mean perhaps they will perhaps they well.
Depends of pixels there election repo man and every time you go to the gas well if you -- -- -- -- -- -- a cop but it's -- it's it's just like a slap in the face of the united of people have to fill up -- -- -- you know it's it's all full and that and that's not going to be good for anybody I didn't.
So I -- so here's my question -- -- gas goes away is an issue because you know it's been coming down on the past couple weeks we'll see and it's just the economy if gas goes away.
And -- health care what goes away let's say the Supreme Court strikes it down.
That is President Obama back in detonated listening.
Candidate a candidate that even if even if -- this is just goes away.
The election will be decided the issue of the economy and I look to -- investing class we've had.
The best first quarter in years and years and years by whether you measure through the Dow -- NASDAQ.
The fact that -- investing class has confidence in the growth in this economy suggests better days are ahead.
Policies are beginning to actually.
I gained traction and I think now would be the time to get behind the president.
Rather than move to someone who clearly has never been tested as a -- -- just small businesses don't feel that way the power of looming tax increases in Obama care still hangs over our heads a small business owners.
And until that goes away jobs won't come back -- jobs come back the economy's growth gentlemen thank you all so much thank you packets coming.