Rallying the party faithful at a Democratic National Committee summit, Obama rattled off a list of issues where he said Republicans were stuck in the past: gay rights, women's equality, wages and health care, to name a few. Driving the midterm election campaigns across the country this year, he said, is a fundamental disagreement between the parties about the best way to secure America's future.
"What they are offering is not a new theory," Obama said, asserting that Republicans had advocated the same policies in the run-up to the Great Depression, the recent recession and the 2012 election. "And the American people said, "No, thanks.'"
[... P]artisan rhetoric from the president had the desired effect of revving up members of his party, some of whom are openly fretting that the unpopular health law, Obama's low approval ratings and historical trends could all work in Republicans' favor this year.
But it also served as a clear reminder that the encroaching election, with all the political posturing it will bring, augers poorly for anything Obama wants to accomplish with Congress this year. After all, 2014 offers Obama potentially the last opportunity to secure legislative achievements before attention turns to the 2016 presidential election and Obama's successor.
"Obviously, this is an election year. But an election that's eight months away shouldn't stop us from making progress right now," Obama said, echoing his State of the Union refrain that he'll work with Congress whenever possible but will act unilaterally to expand economic opportunity however he can.
In an effort to show the president was fully committed to bolstering his party's cause, the White House said Obama was actively looking for ways to help.
[...] In a twist from previous midterms, Obama will even headline fundraisers for super PACs, which he once disparaged but has more recently embraced, arguing Democrats mustn't be steamrolled by GOP outside groups even if the flood of largely unregulated donations leaves a bitter taste for those who hunger for cleaner American elections.
And as Democratic incumbents seek to position themselves for the election, Obama's aides are working with Democratic leaders in the Senate and House to coordinate votes that will bolster the themes they'll be pressing during the campaign, said a White House official, who would speak only on condition of anonymity to discuss internal Democratic deliberations. Obama also plans to do what he can to boost Democratic turnout, while his campaign's vaunted voter data and technology will be made available to all 2014 candidates, the official said.
Italics emphasis added, since GOTV in an off-year election is always an important but sometimes difficult goal to achieve. And the Republicans will be doing their jiggering of things to try to inflame the passions of their base; with GOTV being a rule of the game for both parties. It appears the IP candidacies will be a non-factor this time.
With Dayton doing well in general, and with a new Lt. Guv candidate on the ticket, DFL voters owe it to themselves, to their own best interests, to attend and vote to counter what is expected to be a heated [inflamed] GOP GOTV drive. And there are GOP candidates with money and SuperPACs behind them, one with Norm at the helm, another with Rove, and always there is ALEC a-slush with Koch anti-environment cash in the till.
The DFL GOTV theme likely will be a subject of future Crabgrass posts, leading up to the November showdown.