“It’s a no-brainer,” said one operative who works for a senator up for reelection in 2014. “The second term has been a bit of a disaster, his approval ratings are the lowest of his presidency and Washington is in disarray.”
Many of the Democratic senators elected in 2008 rode to office on Obama’s coattails. Six years later, they’re asking, “Barack who?”
Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colo.) last week avoided being at his own fundraiser while Obama was there, excusing himself on the grounds that he had to attend votes at the Capitol.
It is not just Senate Democrats who are displeased with the president. Some House members have expressed dissent over his approach to the surge of young illegal immigrants streaming across the southern border.
Last week, Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) described Obama’s behavior over the border crisis as “aloof,” “detached” and “bizarre.”
Referring to a staged photo opportunity for news media when Obama drank beer and played pool in Colorado while thousands of Latino children crossed the southern border illegally, Cuellar added, “I mean, the optics are just horrible.”
The centrist Texas congressman was not the only critic. Liberal Rep. Raul Grijalva (D-Ariz.) told MSNBC that “the borderlands deserve a presidential visit.”
He added, “I think a visit by the president is reaffirming that the borderlands along the southwest border are vital and important to this nation. So I think a visit would be important and very symbolic.”
Many Democrats in Congress complain that Obama is indifferent to their concerns. There is also a broader sense on Capitol Hill that Obama just isn’t the guy they thought he was, who would deliver on his vaunted promises of hope and change.
“He’s not the most popular man these days,” one senior Senate Democratic aide said. “A lot of people think it’s been one disappointment after the next and he can’t really get his bearings.”
“Obama The Pariah.” Those strong words are the title in of an article in the Monday edition of the usually friendly to Obama newspaper The Hill. According the report “Democrats in tough reelection races have a blunt message for President Obama: Keep away.”
The article by Amie Parnes claims that driven by the President’s low aprroval ratings Democrats are trying to stay as far away from Obama as possible, which is why the President who earn the title, “campaigner-in-chief “is conspicuously missing from campaign ads and specific to candidate fundraisers. Even worse Democrats are coming out expressing their displeasure with Presidential policies and campaign advisers are telling their candidates to avoid having their picture taken with the president, lest the picture will be used as campaign fodder for their opponents.
The fact that Obama is loosing support in his own party says a lot about the failure of his presidency. Perhaps if he spent more time trying to reach out to the opposition and less time trashing them, he would be less of a pariah to his own party.