Despite a record loss of offices for the Democratic Party during his eight-year presidency, Barack Obama believes that the problem is not the party’s values or policy prescriptions but the inability to “make the argument.”
That’s what his top spokesman told Newsmax Friday in response to our question about the numerous news stories pointing out that Democrats lost 1,030 offices — U. S. Senate and House seats, governorships, and state legislative offices — during the Obama presidency.
Noting that several reports conclude that this is the largest loss of offices for a party while it held the White House in modern history, we asked how the President felt about it.
“I think it’s always important to evaluate the context of those numbers,” replied White House Press Secretary Josh Earnest, “and one important piece of context is simply that there was an historic wave that entered office at the end of 2008 and the beginning of 2009 of Democratic elected officials who benefitted from President Obama being at the top of the ballot in 2008.
“So when we’re talking about those kinds of numbers, it’s important to recognize that those numbers got built up in the first place because of President Obama’s political success in winning the White House the first time.”
But Earnest also admitted that the President “has been disappointed, particularly with regard to this most recent election that a lot of good Democratic elected officials, public servants didn’t succeed at the ballot box.”
As Obama sees it, according to Earnest, there is a need for Democrats “to express their view persuasively in communities all across the country, and that certainly is part of the challenge that President Obama is going to spend some time thinking about as a former President.”
We’ve got the values right, we’ve got the policy prescriptions right, but we just need to go and make the argument. And the President is confident that if and when Democrats do that, there are important gains for the party and for the country that lie ahead.”