January 25th, 2010
10:20 AM ET
5 years ago

Carville: Democrats risk losing House majority

James Carville said the White House has some work to do.
James Carville said the White House has some work to do.

Washington (CNN) – Democratic strategist James Carville said Monday that Democrats will "have a rough 2010" unless the White House does a better job communicating its message about the economy.

Carville said on ABC's "Good Morning America" that President Obama hasn't done a good enough job explaining to the American people "a coherent strategy" for fixing the economy and creating jobs. The president's strategy, he said, seems "very, very ad hoc."

Democrats risk losing their majority in the House this November if they don't figure something out, Carville said.

"You have to think that unless something is done to change direction, I think everything is at risk," he predicted. But Carville said he doesn't think that scenario will come to pass.

He said the White House's decision to bring former Obama campaign manager David Plouffe into their everyday political operation suggests that the White House is serious about repairing an image that was seriously damaged by last week's special election in Massachusetts.

"You got to look at this thing in Massachusetts, and think that's a real signal here," he said. "If you don't deal with it, it's going to get worse."


Filed under: 2010 • James Carville • President Obama
soundoff (154 Responses)
  1. demmie2

    i think calling any supposed 'strategy' for job creation 'ad hoc' is going to far. There is NO ACTION and NO STRATEGY from this whitehouse. You cannot improve the economy without improving the jobless numbers.
    Sadly the only 'strategy' coming from this WH is the stereotypical democrat strategy of 'sowing the seeds of misery' and making more people dependant on the gov't. Perhaps we should loook to Saul ALinsky in order to find context for obamas strategy or lack thereof

    January 25, 2010 09:03 am at 9:03 am |
  2. Jay1975

    "Democrats will "have a rough 2010" unless the White House does a better job communicating its message about the economy." It has done a fine job communicating its message about the economy, the White House has shown that it doesn't care about the economy, jobs or the people. We all just need to be happy little serf's dependent on the great liberal machine.

    January 25, 2010 09:04 am at 9:04 am |
  3. awaitingmoderationby CNN

    Obama and the liberals don't know how to create a job. They are bent on taking over the country and creating a socialist state. If Obozo is reelected we will probably end up on collective farms unless we are card carrying union members. Corrupt, inept and LYING, that is Obama in a nutshell.

    January 25, 2010 09:05 am at 9:05 am |
  4. Enough is Enought

    How can you hope to turn the economy around when you have a jobs summit and invite job destroying union bosses and don't invite the chamber of commerce. When you pass a stimulus that is more about a social agenda than stimulus. Congress and Obama have been doing everything possible to advance the agenda of the trial lawyers and the unions both of which hurt the economy.

    January 25, 2010 09:06 am at 9:06 am |
  5. stu

    Ha ha! Hope and change is coming!

    January 25, 2010 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  6. Independent Observer

    "Carville said on ABC's "Good Morning America" that President Obama hasn't done a good enough job explaining to the American people that the administration has a coherent strategy for fixing the economy and creating jobs."

    That's because they don't have a coherent strategy.

    January 25, 2010 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  7. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    All the Republicans need are 40 seats to switch. Is that possible? I think so, but if the House and Senate Democrats can get their "rear in gear," then they can save their majority. They need to show that they are working on getting the job market back into creating jobs rather than bleeding jobs.

    January 25, 2010 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  8. Mr Joshua

    All of this mess started when the Democrats won the majority in the House and Senate. All the spending during the Bush years? Where did it come from and who ran the house and senate? And Fannie Mae and Fannie Mac? Who was warning of trouble? President Bush. Who said all was fine? Barney Frank.

    January 25, 2010 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  9. Seth Cold

    For gosh sakes get rid of that smirking "Gibbs". Hate to watch how just stands there and has a "smirk" on his face when he talks to reporters about what the President is doing. He is so fake. Makes me not want to listen to the man. Has anyone else felt this way?

    January 25, 2010 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  10. All the news that's fit to omit

    See sheep, he is more worried about "image" and "politics" instead of what is important, like JOBS.

    It's the policy STUPID, he talks and talks and talks and we are tired of what he is saying.

    You nitwits selected, elected and protected this phony community organizer whose main claim to accomplishment in the Senate was voting "present".

    A nation of "sheep" will begat a Government of "wolves".

    Congratulations Obama sheep.

    January 25, 2010 09:11 am at 9:11 am |
  11. Michele

    I think that Dems got a little complacent last year, and then, when the health care bill got convoluted by Republicans, watered down, and became more of the same, they got mad. Whether Obama can bring them back remains to be seen. I do think the optimism is still there, and the hope that we can make this country a better place. I also think that we needed the Brown race to wake us from our lethargy and get us back in fighting mode. I don't see this as Armageddon with a takeover by Republicans after a mere two years. After all, we put up with Bush's mess for 8. Maybe Dems are just too patient and caring? We need to get some of the meanness of Repubs...let's start calling them traitors and Nazis and carrying loaded guns around...yeah, that's the American or (at least the loud right) way of doing things.

    January 25, 2010 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  12. Mike1952

    Maybe the people don't like Wingnut's ideas. I agree has has done a poor job, but I thought he was such a good communicator. You know Chris Matthews said when Wingnut spoke it sent a chill up his leg. So far all this president has done is blame everything on the prior guy. I don't think the people expect excuses and blame from their leader. They expect a plan and action. Until Wingnut has one and takes some action that is not purely government driven he'll lose. If his plan is to expand government he'll lose also.

    January 25, 2010 09:12 am at 9:12 am |
  13. joe smith

    there is no doubt, they are about to be the last show in town, before the train begins to move them out; Mr. Frank is an example, if he is up for re-election, he and Mr. Dodd will have plenty of time to ask "what happened"; moreover perhaps Mr. Murtha will joint them, once the dust settles around the Dyn Corp. connections to bilking the US taxpayers out of $4,5 billion, while paying for sex at the taxpayers expence..yes, the train is adding more cars to take these freeloaders for a long retirement..

    January 25, 2010 09:15 am at 9:15 am |
  14. If you want something ruined, put a republican in charge

    The republicans success in MA means that voters no longer think that those who brought us 9-11 on their watch, the anthrax letters on their watch, the shoe bomber, and countless acts of terrorism on their watch, the collapse of the housing market on their watch, the collapse of the banking industry on their watch, the unnecessary war in Iraq, GITMO, torture, a near depression, and an attack on the workers of America; are responsible for the mess we are in.

    January 25, 2010 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  15. munchmom

    Well, duh! The Dems haven't done anything for the last year except brag on themselves and their "Great One" who has come to save them. Sorry–you lose, and I hope big time losses in November 2010! We will get our country back, and hopefully it won't be too late!!

    January 25, 2010 09:18 am at 9:18 am |
  16. Matt

    Good. Now maybe we can all take a step back, especially the Dems, take another look at things, and remember what bipartisanship really means.

    January 25, 2010 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  17. Mississippi Mrs.

    Mr Carville, you are such a fun guy,always love to hear what you have to say. If the President thinks he hasn't communicated enough though, we are all in deep ka ka. That is all he does is communicate.

    Listening is an art, maybe he could take lessons. He is hurting our great country by going after institutions. Wall street, The Big Insurance Companies. That is sooooooo vague. The bottom line is that he is attacking AMERICANS and he is an AMERICAN.

    He is an anti business fanatic, so we will just have to vote him out in 2012. He will never get it!

    January 25, 2010 09:20 am at 9:20 am |
  18. Bill

    Ah, so rather than worrying about actually coming up with a coherent strategy, Obama and Co. decide to bring in the campaign manager and work on his popularity. So what's to come? More chanting? More internet greetings?

    Mr. President, just barely more than half of us wanted you as President. Most of us that didn't will support you if you govern from the center, as you said you would. But none of us will if you continue with what you're doing. And spending time making yourself more popular is NO substitute for actually coming up with a strategy. Or is it actually POSSIBLE that, like many thought, you're not up to the job????

    January 25, 2010 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
  19. Right Leaning Independent

    I thought the Repubs were dead? That is what the Dem bloggers on here have been saying for the past year!

    "Explaining a coherent strategy" – You have to have a strategy in order to explain it in a coherent manner!

    Plouffe – So who pays for the addition of this full time campaign staffer? Obama is already paying $5.1 million more per year in staff than Bush! I know $5.1 million is not a ton of money but tell that to the unemployed folks!!

    January 25, 2010 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  20. Tom in Delaware

    The Liberals still don't get it....they're trying to spin the Brown victory as some secret voter code that the country wants an even greater influx of Liberal programs.

    They cannot accept the fact that their ideas and policies have been rejected by the public, so instead they call people who disagree every name in the book.

    That doesn't wash anymore.

    Don't
    Even
    Notice
    I'm
    Always
    Lying

    Liberals in Denial.

    Now you can't say you didn't know.

    January 25, 2010 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  21. If you want something ruined, put a republican in charge

    If the democrats don't get off their butts, and get back to why they were elected, it doesn't matter who voters send to Washington. With republicans, at least you know their main mission is to have Obama and America fail. Democrats gave the impression they would work for moving America forward, but we have not seen a lot of that so far.

    January 25, 2010 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  22. Dutch the Great

    The democrats won't lose the majority in the House. Democratic House members are in a better position that democratic senators. They need to worry.

    January 25, 2010 09:22 am at 9:22 am |
  23. clr33

    The pres doesn't need another campaign manager involved. ALL he has been doing for the past year is CAMPAIGN. He needs level-headed businessmen/women to come in and get rid of the pork, and get down to business in creating jobs and cleaning up the mess they made for the least year. The last thing we need is to mask over the mess further with another campaign didiot.

    January 25, 2010 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  24. S.- AR

    I think Carville is always talking for the Republicans. Lately all I see is he and his wife on CNN talking down the democrats. He is afraid of his wife. He is not a speaking representative of the democrats; therefore, I wonder CNN about you and your motives.

    January 25, 2010 09:23 am at 9:23 am |
  25. Connie Brighten

    "The president's strategy, he said, seems "very, very ad hoc." - You're so right, Carville. The POTUS and his people don't have a clue. They started out knowing nothing about government and have learned nothing. Their only schtick was "Hope" and "Change". That just ain't playing well on Main Street, now is it?

    January 25, 2010 09:24 am at 9:24 am |
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