Democrats who have to face voters this fall are running faster from President Obama’s record than he is running from his promise to change Washington. Democrats all across the country are making explicit declarations that they are different than the leader of their party. Check out the coverage below for a few examples:
The Hill: Heitkamp distances herself from Obama in new ad
North Dakota Senate candidate Heidi Heitkamp (D) is out with a new ad homing in on two issues likely to resonate with voters in the state: energy and agriculture. The 30-second spot, "Field," features Heitkamp walking through a farm field touting what she frames as her refusal to follow President Obama's policies on energy and agriculture. "I’ll do what’s right for North Dakota. That’s why I stood up to President Obama to support a Balanced Budget Amendment," she says.
Politico: Ohio Dem spurns Obama, Pelosi
Charlie Wilson, an Ohio Democrat who lost his bid for re-election in 2010 and is seeking a rematch with Republican Rep. Bill Johnson, is out with a new ad (above) that attempts to put as much distance as possible between him and his national party. The 30-second spot, titled “Independent,” asserts that as a congressman Wilson voted against Nancy Pelosi 105 times and against “the Pelosi Cap and Trade tax.” The ad also notes that Wilson opposed “Obama’s bad trade deals. While the state as a whole remains quite competitive and the president continues to lead in most polls, the ad provides an indication of just how out of favor the national Democratic Party is in parts of the southeastern Ohio-based 6th District, which includes much of Appalachian Ohio. The mood in some of the coal-producing counties there isn’t all that different than across the border in West Virginia, where animosity toward the Obama administration runs strong.
National Journal: Tomblin Debuts First TV Ads of His Reelection Campaign
West Virginia Democratic Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin is launching the first television ads of his reelection campaign, two positive commercials that focus on coal and his record on fiscal issues in the state while distancing him from President Obama and the national party. "Growing up, I learned that coal is how towns like ours survive," says Tomblin in the first spot, highlighting the small town where he grew up. "Since the day I became governor, I fought the Obama Administration's war on coal. I took them to court, and we won." Obama is unpopular in West Virginia, and coal/energy is an area where the Democratic governor has distanced himself from the administration.
Colorado Observer: Club 20 Debate – A Question of Partisanship or None
Third Congressional District candidates incumbent Republican U.S. Rep. Scott Tipton, Democrat state Rep. Sal Pace and independent Tisha Casida boiled down to a hot contest over who touts the party line versus who can build bi-partisan supported solutions. Pace attempted to paint himself as the representative who could work across both party aisles in Congress – and portray Tipton as a rigid Republican who can’t work toward compromises. To prove the point, Pace of Pueblo said he’d even support a balanced budget amendment to the U.S. Constitution – an effort fought by Democrats and pushed by Republicans. Tipton countered that Pace has been a partisan Democrat throughout his four years in the state House – and challenged the Pueblo Democrat to name his preferred presidential candidate. Pace’s response was awkward – if not illusive. “I think it’s obvious,” said Pace. “You’re voting for the Republican and I’m voting for the Democrat.”
Elections Election 2012