Harry Reid’s chief of staff blasts Obama over losses: ‘sometimes the messenger isn’t good’

It didn’t take long for Democrats to start pointing fingers over Tuesday’s loss of Senate control.

Sen. Harry Reid’s chief of staff, David Krone, said the responsibility lies squarely at the feet of President Barack Obama.

“The president’s approval rating is barely 40 percent,” Krone told The Washington Post. “What else more is there to say? … He wasn’t going to play well in North Carolina or Iowa or New Hampshire. I’m sorry. It doesn’t mean that the message was bad, but sometimes the messenger isn’t good.”

Krone blamed the president’s team for not coordinating better with Senate campaigns.

“I don’t think that the political team at the White House truly was up to speed and up to par doing what needed to get done,” he said.

An anonymous senior White House official, however, told The Post that the problem was not on the president’s end, but on Krone’s, whom the White House suspected of leaking “unflattering details” about the president to the press.

“David was complicating things significantly in our ability to work with the Senate,” the official said.

Sen. Harry Reid
Soon-to-be former Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid

But other Democrats agree that the president was no help to their attempts to hold on to the Senate, pointing to Obama’s Oct. 2 speech in Chicago in which he tied his policies to local elections in just the way that most candidates had been trying to avoid.

“I am not on the ballot this fall,” Obama said. “But make no mistake — these policies are on the ballot, every single one of them.”

“It took about 12 seconds for every reporter, every race, half of the Obama world to say that was probably not the right thing to say,” a senior Democrat official told The Post about that remark.

“It is amazing that it was in the speech,” the official said. “It wasn’t ad-libbed.”

Krone added Obamacare to the list of issues that weighed down Democrat Senate candidates.

“No member of the Democratic caucus screwed up the rollout of that health care Web site,” Krone told The Post, “yet they paid the price — every one of them.”

George Upper

George Upper is a U.S. Army special operations veteran, an academic, a poet, and an MBA who started writing political news and commentary when people stopped listening to his rants in person.

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