Axelrod says Dem base is behind Obama
September 16th, 2011
10:44 AM ET

Axelrod says Dem base is behind Obama

Top Obama campaign strategist David Axelrod is putting on a confident face after a string of polls have suggested the president’s approval ratings are at historic lows just as his reelection bid begins to ramp up.

In a memo to several reporters Friday, Axelrod writes the media has overly focused on the president’s low ratings without noting that those of the Republican Party and Congress are also scraping the bottom of the barrel:

Members of the media have focused on the President’s approval ratings as if they existed in a black box. Following the intransigence of the Republicans during the debt debate, the approval rating of the GOP brand dropped to a historic low. The approval rating of Congress dropped to a near historic low. Americans are still dealing with the impact of the financial crisis and recession and the long-term economic trends that have seen wages stagnate for many, and that is manifested in their anger towards Washington.

And, despite a wave of suggestions that many Democrats are upset and disappointed with Obama’s tenure, Axelrod argues, “The base is mobilized behind the president.”

12,000 individuals applied to join the campaign as volunteer summer fellows, more than in 2008. 1,100 students across the country are organizing their campuses in support of the campaign as fellows this fall. We had 552,462 individuals give to the campaign in the second quarter - more than we had in all of 2007. Of our 552,462 total donors to the 2012 campaign so far, more than 260,000 of them are completely new to the Obama organization and have never given before.

The memo comes a day after former Clinton campaign strategist and CNN Contributor James Carville wrote a widely-read article on in which he said it's time for the president to “panic” about his reelection bid and fire several of his staff members.

Topics: The News

soundoff (27 Responses)
  1. Victoria

    The republicans should be behind it too. It is balanced and bipartisan

    September 16, 2011 at 10:59 am |
    • Jay in NC

      In his own words.

      September 16, 2011 at 1:03 pm |
  2. John

    Great message "we suck, but they really suck". What leadership...

    September 16, 2011 at 11:28 am |
    • Cal

      You support the GOP who destroyed the country and now want to take the country back to the Great recession of 2008 that they caused. No Thanks...

      September 16, 2011 at 11:47 am |
      • Dennis

        You might want to read about Clinton and the Community Reinvestment Act that required banks to lower mortgage requirements so unqualified people and illegal aliens could qualify for mortgages. When the Bush administration tried to investigate Freddie and Fannie for fraud, democrats such as Maxine Waters and Barnie Frank called them racists. Unfortunately, the administration backed off because of the bad press. Blaming republicans for something that democrats created and fostered is ignorance at best but most likely the result of a blind anti business bias that has resulted in a housing bubble that has exploded and the most inept presidency since Jimmy Carter.

        September 16, 2011 at 12:05 pm |
      • Howard

        You seem to be confusing the GOP with democratic congressmen Dodd and Frank, who caused America's economic melt down ... and thanks to brain dead democrats, Barney Frank is still in office, continuing to pollute America with his inept political influence.

        September 16, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
  3. Ray E. Georgia

    Of course they are. Especally those in Brooklyn. Way behind, I would say. Tax the Rich and give it to the poor. A real good plan. Lessee. Unemployment up 11000 this week. Still at an Offical 9.1 percent. Poverty at 15 percent. 46 Million on Food Stamps. But Obama has a plan. Yippee!

    September 16, 2011 at 11:31 am |
    • SiriusVH

      December 1982 ... two years into Reagan's presidency .... rate of unemployment: 10.8% ....... Percentage increase in the Federal debt under Reagan's tenure: +186% ...... Feel free to check my numbers and, then, draw your own conclusions, if you are capable of doing anything besides regurgitating the inane and inept talking points you heard on FOX .... 🙂

      September 16, 2011 at 1:53 pm |
      • C-Lo

        #1–Reagan's was 3% bump from when he took office, and in the face of HUGE inflation/interest rates.
        #2–Obama over the same period 5% bump (5-9.9%) Little inflation (which we will see coming up with these huge spending packages)
        #3–Dems full control of Congress and 4 years of white house (jan '77-'81) when Reps took back Senate
        #4–Dems full control of Congress (jan'07-'11) and whitehouse ('09-'13) with Repubs taking control of House Jan '11 and stonewalled by Senate on economic bills.

        So you want more than "Fox talking points?" there you go.

        September 16, 2011 at 2:20 pm |
  4. Blackman in America

    .............WHY is the media not informing the public of all the postive and correct things my President has done for this country since taking office (and before taking office)? It's as if the American media is trying ONCE again to pick the next President and NOT the people electing the President (as it should be). Remember the last time this happened what the results were? I sure as hell do.

    September 16, 2011 at 11:41 am |
    • Joe

      He has done Jack Shit But spend our Money and give away our money to his buddies for reelection
      Obama is a snake oil saleman

      September 16, 2011 at 12:32 pm |
    • Dennis

      Don't you wonder why Obama, himself and the rest of the democrats aren't touting all their great accomplishments? That's because there aren't any and they know it. History proves over and over again that liberal governance doesn't work and yet there are still 20% of Americans who admit to being liberal. The only positive thing he's done is to continue most of the Bush anti terror policies and that would not make for good press.

      September 16, 2011 at 12:38 pm |
    • Jay in NC

      "American media is trying ONCE again to pick the next President" yep, thats exactly what happened in 2008, and that is why we are in the mess we are in now.

      September 16, 2011 at 12:51 pm |
  5. Dennis

    So the looney left who make up 20% of voters and have no clue about how to run a business but are experts in creating government dependent Americans are still behind this Jimmy Carter disaster. Wow, that's news.

    September 16, 2011 at 11:51 am |
  6. crowneagle

    Just answer me one thing____What exactly is his base? Cause if it includes government workers or immigrants, count me out!

    September 16, 2011 at 11:52 am |
  7. Howard

    Axelrod would say, or do anything to get Obama reelected ... maybe even beg, like Obama is starting to do.

    September 16, 2011 at 2:27 pm |
  8. blaqmajik

    Heres a short list of President Obamas Accomplishments:

    Create an Advanced Manufacturing Fund to invest in peer-reviewed manufacturing processes
    Increase minority access to capital
    Require economic justification for tax changes
    Change standards for determining broadband access
    Establish a credit card bill of rights
    Expand loan programs for small businesses
    Extend and index the 2007 Alternative Minimum Tax patch
    Extend and index the temporary fix to the Alternative Minimum Tax that was passed in 2007
    Close the "doughnut hole" in Medicare prescription drug plan
    Expand the Senior Corps volunteer program
    Require insurance companies to cover pre-existing conditions
    Give tax credits to those who need help to pay health premiums
    Require large employers to contribute to a national health plan
    Require children to have health insurance coverage
    Expand eligibility for Medicaid
    Expand eligibility for State Children's Health Insurance Fund (SCHIP)
    Require health plans to disclose how much of the premium goes to patient care
    Establish an independent health institute to provide accurate and objective information
    In non-competitive markets, force insurers to pay out a reasonable share of their premiums for patient care
    Eliminate the higher subsidies to Medicare Advantage plans
    Expand funding to train primary care providers and public health practitioners
    Increase funding to expand community based prevention programs
    Reinstate executive order to hire an additional 100,000 federal employees with disabilities within five years.
    Increase the Veterans Administration budget to recruit and retain more mental health professionals
    Fully fund the Veterans Administration
    Assure that the Veterans Administration budget is prepared as 'must-pass' legislation
    Expand the Veterans Administration's number of "centers of excellence" in specialty care
    Appoint a special adviser to the president on violence against women
    Fully fund the Violence Against Women Act
    Direct military leaders to end war in Iraq
    Begin removing combat brigades from Iraq
    No permanent bases in Iraq
    Send two additional brigades to Afghanistan
    Strengthen and expand military exchange programs with other countries
    Make greater investment in advanced military air technology
    Make U.S. military aid to Pakistan conditional on anti-terror efforts
    Give a speech at a major Islamic forum in the first 100 days of his administration
    Allocate Homeland Security funding according to risk
    Create a real National Infrastructure Protection Plan
    Increase funding for local emergency planning
    Stand down nuclear forces to be reduced under the Moscow Treaty
    Appoint a White House Coordinator for Nuclear Security
    Initiate a grant and training program for law enforcement to deter cyber crime
    Improve relations with Turkey, and its relations with Iraqi Kurds
    Launch an international Add Value to Agriculture Initiative (AVTA)
    Create a rapid response fund for emerging democracies
    Grant Americans unrestricted rights to visit family and send money to Cuba
    Restore funding for the Byrne Justice Assistance Grant (Byrne/JAG) program
    Establish an Energy Partnership for the Americas
    Expand the Nurse-Family Partnership to all low-income, first-time mothers
    Release presidential records
    Require new hires to sign a form affirming their hiring was not due to political affiliation or contributions.
    Provide affordable, high-quality child care
    Recruit math and science degree graduates to the teaching profession
    Reduce subsidies to private student lenders and protect student borrowers
    Encourage water-conservation efforts in the West
    Increase funding for national parks and forests
    Increase funding for the Land and Water Conservation Fund
    Encourage farmers to use more renewable energy and be more energy efficient
    Expand Pell grants for low-income students
    Pursue a wildfire management plan
    More controlled burns to reduce wildfires
    Expand access to places to hunt and fish
    Push for enactment of Matthew Shepard Act, which expands hate crime law to include sexual orientation and other factors
    Restore funding to the EEOC and the U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs
    Reform mandatory minimum sentences
    Create a White House Office on Urban Policy
    Fully fund the Community Development Block Grant (CDBG)
    Establish program to convert manufacturing centers into clean technology leaders
    Establish 'Promise Neighborhoods' for areas of concentrated poverty
    Create an artist corps for schools
    Champion the importance of arts education
    Support increased funding for the NEA
    Promote cultural diplomacy
    Add another Space Shuttle flight
    Use the private sector to improve spaceflight
    Work with international allies on space station
    Partner to enhance the potential of the International Space Station
    Use the International Space Station for fundamental biological and physical research
    Explore whether International Space Station can operate after 2016
    Conduct robust research and development on future space missions
    Increase spending to prepare for longer space missions
    Work toward deploying a global climate change research and monitoring system
    Enhance earth mapping
    Appoint an assistant to the president for science and technology policy
    Support commercial access to space
    Establish school programs to highlight space and science achievements
    Establish special crime programs for the New Orleans area
    Rebuild schools in New Orleans
    Fund a major expansion of AmeriCorps
    Create a Social Investment Fund Network
    Bolster the military's ability to speak different languages
    Appoint the nation's first Chief Technology Officer
    Provide grants to early-career researchers
    Work to overturn Ledbetter vs. Goodyear
    Create a national declassification center
    Appoint an American Indian policy adviser
    Create new financial regulations
    Increase funding for land-grant colleges
    Ban lobbyist gifts to executive employees
    Sign a "universal" health care bill
    Create new criminal penalties for mortgage fraud
    Raise fuel economy standards
    Invest in all types of alternative energy
    Enact tax credit for consumers for plug-in hybrid cars
    Ask people and businesses to conserve electricity
    Create a 'Green Vet Initiative' to promote environmental jobs for veterans
    Create job training programs for clean technologies
    Require states to provide incentives for utilities to reduce energy consumption
    Support high-speed rail
    Invest in public transportation
    Equalize tax breaks for driving and public transit
    Share enviromental technology with other countries
    Double federal spending for research on clean fuels
    Provide grants to encourage energy-efficient building codes
    Increase funding for the Environmental Protection Agency
    Get his daughters a puppy
    Appoint at least one Republican to the cabinet
    Raise the small business investment expensing limit to $250,000 through the end of 2009
    Extend unemployment insurance benefits and temporarily suspend taxes on these benefits
    Reverse restrictions on stem cell research
    Repeal DontAsk/DontTell
    Killed Osama Bin Laden

    September 16, 2011 at 2:32 pm |
    • SteveO

      How many of those created jobs or reduced the debt or deficit? How many killed jobs and increased the debt or deficit? The answer to those two questions have already determined Obamas fate. One and done.

      September 16, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
    • C-Lo

      Grow gov't funding, increase gov't funding, expand gov't spending, promote gov't spending, bankrupt America with gov't spending, Spend, spend spend. EVERY ONE of the gov't dollars spent comes from individual taxpayer pockets. This includes tarrifs, corp taxes, fees, fines and all other forms of payment to the gov't.

      "Invest in all types of alternative energy," and "share enviro tech with other countries?" Yes, that was part of the FAILED TRILLION $$ STIMULUS PACKAGE. Billions going to billionaires who you claim to so vehemently hate, overseas corps (great investment in America there) and bailing out foreclosures, many of which ended right back up in the same ditch because the Dem's (Barney Frank) policies forcing banks to lend to unqualified borrowers, hmmm, kind of like Solyndra. The Gov't is not a good steward of taxpayer money.

      September 16, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
    • C-Lo

      Has anyone else noticedd that nearly all the programs Gov't gets involved in fail or require more and more and more money (TAXES) to stay afloat?

      Has anyone else noticed that the more regulations the gov't puts in place, the worse off the private sector ends up?

      Has anyone else noticed that overbearing gov't regulations help "evil corporations" by limiting access to the market by the little guy?

      Has anyone else noticed that the more $$ gov't takes in, the more scandal and fleecing occurs?

      Has anyone noticed that this is destroying America?

      Has anyone noticed that Dems, and now many Repubs are in favor of bigger Govt?

      September 16, 2011 at 3:23 pm |
    • NW1000

      Obama is a clueless, incompetent boob, and so are you.

      September 16, 2011 at 6:12 pm |
  9. focusonjobs1

    The media is doing what they always do, they are fight promoters. If one side is weak, which the republicans are, they go out of their way to promote them. They could care less who wins; all they want is a good fight. Right now the GOPs approval rating is nonexistent, so all articles will be tilted their way. They call it being fair and unbiased, when in reality its lazy reporting. For example when they report the Democratic base doesn’t support Obama’s jobs plan with no explanation as to why they don’t support it. If they did they would find we don’t like the tax cuts part. So Axelrod is correct and the only hope the GOP has is maybe the public will not turn out to vote or they will be so mad that Obama compromises too much and vote against him out of spite. I say don’t worry about the media not doing their job by not reporting the fact that Republicans are still promoting the same policies that history shows don’t work. Only 2% of Americans directly benefit from their proposals, everyone else is supposed to get the leftovers. The only way they get middle class and poor to support their agenda is to mix it racism and promoting the idea that they (the middle class and poor) have more than they do and people with less are going to get what you have worked so hard to get. The truth is if you’re not in that top 2% you don’t have @#$% and they (the top 2%) are worried that you will get what they have!

    September 16, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
  10. rb

    I think Obama should ask Hillary to be his running mate. Sorry, Biden, but this would be a game changer.

    September 16, 2011 at 4:03 pm |
  11. feelyourpain

    They would be rioting because corporate America is sitting on 2 trillion in cash and want more before they feel safe enough to invest. Also, everyone can see its not shared pain; the rich are making record profits while the median income has gone in the opposite direction and unemployment is stagnate. The figures are amazing…. Of the record profits 88% have gone to the top while 1% went to employees. Greed has taken over and the bottom line rules, they proved it the last time they had a tax holiday and took all the tax free money they had stashed overseas and cut jobs instead of hiring like they promised. Only the stupid would blame Obama while corporate executives and Wall Street are making record profits. 14 months is a long time to play politics while things continue to get worst.

    September 16, 2011 at 7:23 pm |
  12. Dee

    President Obama has done a lot for this country it is not time for him to campaign he has to get the american people back to work congress is not thinking about them all they can say is NO, NO, NO and don't tax the rich.

    There will be plenty of time to debate the candidates they are not doing anything but fighting among themselves and are not worried about the unemployed. All everyone can do is blame President Obama and noone will support anything he puts out there. The american people are hurting and needs congress to stop playing games.

    Everyone is worried about the polls Axelrod is right the President is doing fine and his poll numbers are counted through social media, technology etc. and the amount of funds and pledges received from the american people, not the stupid polls the media is engaged in.

    September 16, 2011 at 11:21 pm |
  13. Liz Carter in Georgia

    Dee; Good post. I agree wholeheartedly. Those demons in Washington are strategically and purposefully holding back on ANY jobs plan, whether it be the one OBAMA laid out or any of the so-called ones the GOP claims to have presented to the President. They clearly don't intend for AMERICA to be up and running in 2012! They're banking on SNEAKING back into the WH because America's NOT up and running! People are still NOT working and OBAMA being totally blamed for entitlement reform 'adjustments'! GOP STRATEGY!

    September 21, 2011 at 4:39 am |
  14. Jremo

    Based on the republican candidates we're better off with Obama nuff said

    September 27, 2011 at 8:34 pm |