Landrieu Chairmanship Delay Exemplifies Democrat Dilemma
Mary Landrieu had a rough day. First, a Democratic poll showed her deeply underwater, with more than 50% disapproval. Her Chairmanship got off to a horrible start after she was forced to delay her ascension to the post in order to avoid chairing the committee during the confirmation of a liberal anti-energy nominee to the Department of Interior, Rhea Suh. It's a sign of just how complicated Landrieu's Chairmanship will be now that she is expected to be a rubberstamp for the Obama/Reid war on American energy agenda. As Politico reported, "Deliberate or not, the lag in Landrieu’s ascension shows that heading the powerful committee could bring her some political pitfalls as well as advantages as she seeks reelection. A poll released Tuesday showed her and Cassidy in a statistical tie." Mary Landrieu claims to be a friend of the energy industry, but instead of advocating for a job creating, pro-energy agenda, she has adopted the President's strategy of "leading from behind." Louisiana voters expect Senator Landrieu to stand with them in Washington, but it looks as if she will instead simply recuse herself and duck from President Obama's liberal agenda when convenient.
Landrieu's dilemma may be front and center because of her post, but other Democrats also find themselves in a similar predicament, having spent the last six months hiding from President Obama. Kay Hagan hid out when the President visited North Carolina. Mark Begich was so nervous about the thought of Obama visiting Alaska that he threatened to "drag him around the state." We're pretty sure that Mark Pryor would beg and plead to keep President Obama out of Arkansas.
Yet despite knowing that President Obama could cost them the Senate, Democrats running in states where the vast majority of voters disapprove of him have no problem collecting cash from the President and his liberal allies in Hollywood and New York City. In fact, it's all part of their strategy. According to both POLITICO and The Hill, the plan is to keep Barack Obama far away from competitive battlegrounds while using him to headline fundraiser after fundraiser for the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Organizing for Action, and Harry Reid's Senate Majority PAC.
Here's the problem that vulnerable Democrats face in top battleground states: Despite the fact that President's Obama's approval only averages 36% in Senate battlegrounds, the Democrats asking for votes have been rubber stamps for his agenda, supporting it an astounding 94% of the time. Their blind loyalty to the agenda of such an unpopular President is insanity in the eyes of the majority of voters in these states.
Democrats like Mary Landrieu, Mark Pryor, Kay Hagan, and Mark Begich poke President Obama with one hand and collect Obama's liberal political cash and resources with the other. In doing so, they manage to reinforce an already heightened credibility problem with voters. Each of them appear to be just another Washington hypocrite trying to have it both ways - exactly the type of politician voters seek to replace in 2014.