The Obama Factor: Kentucky Democrat Repeatedly Refuses To Admit That She Ever Voted For Obama

President_Barack_Obamaimages-2The Washington Post is reporting it as one of the most painful 40 seconds of this election cycle. Alison Lundergan Grimes (D) was asked a simple question: did you vote for President Obama. What followed in the clip below was one of the most revealing 40 seconds of how bad this election is becoming for Democrats and how radioactive the President has become. Grimes refuses to answer. She is trying to unseat Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R) and these mid-term elections tend to reflect the view of the incumbent president as some voters try to either add support or resistance to a president in Congress. Obama’s popularity stands at a dismal 30 percent in Kentucky. The clip is particularly interesting given the recent public statements of the President that this election is about his policies. It was an effort to rally Democrats but candidates who have been increasingly fleeing associations with the unpopular president cringed across the country. Given Obama’s national polling, an election based his policies and Administration would magnify the already great expected losses in November, including the possible loss of both houses. Even long-time ally and former campaign manager David Axelrod said that the President’s framing of the election as a vote on his policies was a huge mistake. The deer in the headlights look of Grimes reflects that point vividly.

The President’s words actually started out reflecting the national strategy of the Democratic National Committee to minimize his profile and policies in this election but he then veered directly into the wall that the Democrats are trying desperately (and unsuccessfully) to avoid:

“I am not on the ballot this fall. Michelle’s pretty happy about that. But make no mistake: these policies are on the ballot. Every single one of them.”

You could hear Democratic candidates collectively moaning with the last part of the message. Grimes vividly illustrates the fear of association with Obama. Grimes repeatedly refuses to even admit that she voted for the leader of her party in 2008 and 2012. It was, as the Post notes, an easy question to address. Just say that you voted for him but you are disappointed in him. Instead, Grimes refuses repeatedly to answer the question from the Louisville Courier-Journal editorial board.

She then takes an equally curious spin by insisting that she is a Hillary Clinton supporter, something that is only marginally better in Kentucky.

I continually find such transformations among politicians fascinating. They will flock around a popular president as they once did with Obama but have no hesitation to treat him like a pariah once his polling numbers fall. It does not play well, as shown on this video, but they assume it is worse to admit even the slightest level of prior support for an unpopular president.

Civil libertarians have long been opposed to Obama, who quickly shredded his promised reforms from the first election and launched comprehensive attack on privacy, press rights, and other core values. However, civil libertarians remain a small part of the electorate, which is why they were the first to be jettisoned by the Obama Administration. Now there is a far broader level of opposition building around policies like immigration, health care, and international relations — the very policies that Obama highlighted as the real issue for races like that of Grimes.

220px-Alison_Lundergan_Grimes_2011220px-Mitch_McConnell_official_portrait_112th_CongressGrimes is the daughter of Charlotte and Jerry Lundergan, a former Kentucky Democratic chairman and state representative. She is also a law graduate of American University. Grimes was viewed as serious challenge to McConnell who could be attacked as the classic Washington insider. However, she has been criticized for a lackluster campaign. What is fascinating is that her lead among women is only one percent, according to an article in The Week.

There is still a possibility of the classic “October surprise” factor in shifting such polls and prospects. At the moment, Obama could be looking at the lamest of lame duck terms if both houses go to the GOP. He is not alone. Democratic candidates are even turning on Nancy Pelosi on the campaign trail. The wedge political issues advanced by Pelosi over things like immigration have not panned out. Instead there has been a back lash that led Obama to promise Democrats that he would not act on immigration until after voters went to the polls. Gwen Graham, one of the Democratic Party’s candidates in Florida ran an ad saying “Here’s what I believe: Congress is broken” — it showed a picture of Pelosi as well as John Boehner. Other candidates are doing the same — running against their own leader in the house. These are strange times indeed.

314 thoughts on “The Obama Factor: Kentucky Democrat Repeatedly Refuses To Admit That She Ever Voted For Obama”

  1. Paul,
    From DBQ’s 12:31 post:

    “That doesn’t give anyone the right to demand monetary consideration from others for that right. This is where we get into trouble when the government gets in the middle of marriage by giving tax breaks, inheritance laws (all of which have to do with $$$$) and generally getting in the middle of marriage and creating discrimination by favoring treatment of one class [married] over another [single].

    The government should butt out of marriage.”

  2. Olly – DBQ was pushing natural rights as being what made us happy. I offered an example to see if that fit within the definition of natural rights.

    I never said that natural rights are there to make you happy. You have a right to pursue happiness. You don’t have a guarantee to get happiness.

    If your pursuit of happiness is marrying or screwing your sister. Then I guess you can “pursue” that goal. I personally don’t care if you decide to screw your sister or just co-habitate. The Egyptians thought it was just fine.

    However, (this is the general you….not directed at the personal you since I sincerely doubt you want to have sex with your sister) your right to pursue your happiness ends when it infringes on the rights of other people. It ends when you want to have other people subsidize your choices monetarily or ask for special dispensations. It ends when you insist that other people have to validate your choices whether they like it or not.

    As long as your pursuit of happiness doesn’t affect the rest of society at large in a negative way, I see no reason that you and your sister shouldn’t have a wonderful life. If the result of your pursuit of happiness results in a burden on the rest of society, then we might have some issues because my having to support your offspring would really impact my happiness pursuit.

    1. DBQ – I think the Eqyptians (Ptolemys) thought marrying your sister kept things in the family. Actually power in Egypt flowed through the females so they had a very important role. Most Egyptians married outside the family, some having several wives, plus concubines.

    1. DBQ – I seriously doubt my sister would be up for it. However, if it is a natural right than it cannot be against the law. Now that same sex marriage is legal in so many states (probably a natural right for you) everything is on the table.

      This is why I have a major problem with natural rights. Basically it is hedonism by a new name.

  3. Byron, you don’t have to convince me; I’ve been a very vocal defender of natural rights since I joined this blog.

  4. Olly:

    people enter into society to protect their rights. Rights are independent of the state, society is a way to better protect our rights. Our rights accrue to us as human beings, not as members of a society.

    The only function of a just society is to protect the rights of individuals, there is or should be no other function.

    1. Byron – and how is your just society doing with protecting people with the IRS, NSA, DEA, Border Patrol, etc.

  5. Byron got here long before me and has the battle scars to prove it. Many of the wounds are in the back, and below the belt.,

  6. Byron, It’s GREAT to have you back. Stick around dude, I miss you. For the newcomers. Byron is one of the first right leaning libertarian, like myself. He helped keep me sane during the dark years.

  7. Byron,
    Can you imagine any reasonable person among the founding generation arguing AGAINST rights independent of the state? I look forward to reading the essay.

  8. Olly:

    I will try and find an essay by an Objectivist philosopher, when I read it, I knew what freedom should be.

    Our freedoms should almost be limitless, the only limitation should be the harming of another individual in any way; fraud, death, injury, etc. We entered into society to expand our rights, not to limit them or restrict them.

    “for I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.”

    Thomas Jefferson

    The men who founded our country are sickened by what has happened to America.

  9. Paul,
    I’m not speaking for DBQ; natural rights don’t make anyone happy or sad. We don’t have a natural right to happiness but we do have the natural right to pursue it.

    The way to figure out if something is a natural right is to determine whether that right existed prior to entering the social contract. This is a good article on this point:

    1. Olly – my discussion is only with DBQ on this matter. I am trying to find the edges of her argument.

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