Steve Israelís 2014 smoke signals hint that the buildingís on fire

Written by David Freddoso. Posted in 2014 Campaigns
Published on March 14, 2014

Today's "Tweet the Press" interview between NBC's David Gregory and DCCC Chairman Steve Israel, D-N.Y., contained what I consider two giant red flags. The first came as Gregory noted the toxic political environment, the Florida-13 result, and President Obama's low approval ratings. Then he asked how Democratic House candidates can handle this:
David Gregory ✔ @davidgregory
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.@IsraelDCCC The Pres is at 41% - which can be a rough predictor in election year - how do you advise Dems to counter that? #TweetThePress

11:38 AM - 14 Mar 2014
Steve Israel @IsraelDCCCFollow
.@DavidGregory Run like mayors. Be about solutions. Fit your district #TweetThePress

11:39 AM - 14 Mar 2014

In my limited experience, this is the one true and unmistakable indication that a party is going to lose the coming Midterm. I saw Republicans say this in 2006 and Democrats say it in 2010 and 2002. The magical phrase is some variation of "We're going to run on local issues." It's just been invoked, so now it's just a question of how bad it gets.
What came next was an exchange over Obamacare that wasn't terribly useful, but only because Gregory missed the key question:

David Gregory ✔ @davidgregory
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.@IsraelDCCC Does that mean that Democrats have to win the ideological fight over Obamacare? #TweetThePress
11:40 AM - 14 Mar 2014



Steve Israel @IsraelDCCC
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.@DavidGregory This is about who's on your side? R u protecting insurance companies or middle classs? #TweetThePress

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.@davidgregory Americans want #ACA fixed, not repealed #tweetthepress

11:42 AM - 14 Mar 2014


The correct continuation from here is to ask, What's wrong with Obamacare, and will your candidates propose on the campaign trail to fix it? There probably are good ways for Democrats to mitigate the damage from Obamacare. But one thing they really, really cannot do is pretend they have a fix and try to run out the clock before anyone figures out they don't. Even if David Gregory isn't sharp enough to ask this question, local journalists will ask it, and debate moderators will ask it. Non-answers will be punished, and may even become devastating campaign commercials.As the interview went on, Israel changed the subject to the minimum wage. The CBO has already given Republicans an easy answer to that issue, but it's probably the best he or anyone else can do at this point -- which is a sign of how bad things are.

Finally, the one-word answer of the week:


David Gregory
@davidgregory
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.@IsraelDCCC Does President Obama help Democrats? #TweetThePress

11:44 AM - 14 Mar 2014

Steve Israel @IsraelDCCCFollow
.@davidgregory Yes. #tweetthepress
11:44 AM - 14 Mar 2014




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