McConnell: 2012 will be a 'referendum'
October 23rd, 2011
10:56 AM ET
11 years ago

McConnell: 2012 will be a 'referendum'

(CNN) - Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell disagreed Sunday with Vice President Joe Biden’s hypothesis that the 2012 election will be a choice between Democrats and Republicans, and instead labeled it a “referendum” on President Barack Obama.

"The vice president said this election will be a choice. It will be a referendum, a referendum on the president and his performance," McConnell said Sunday on CNN's "State of the Union." "Their policies are in place and they are demonstrably not working."

Appearing earlier on the same program, Biden said voters in the next election will see a clear distinction between policies of Democrats and those of Republicans who, he said, are advocating for the same proposals that contributed to the economic decline.

However, McConnell said the White House is looking for someone to blame to score political points when, in his opinion, the current administration is culpable.

The lack of a public signing ceremony for the trade agreements that recently passed in Congress with bipartisan support was evidence, McConnell said, that the White House is "ashamed to mention any of the things that they do with Republicans because it steps on their storyline."

"Their storyline is that there must be some villain out there who's keeping this administration from succeeding," the Kentucky senator told CNN Chief Political Correspondent Candy Crowley.

On Thursday, the White House canceled a previously scheduled signing ceremony and remarks by the president but still allowed photographers to be present at the signings on Friday. A White House official said it "was simply a schedule change" and that the president has touted the passage of the agreements, including in Detroit the day after they passed.

The official also said the president's announcement on withdrawing U.S. troops from Iraq was added to his schedule Friday.

- CNN Correspondent Athena Jones contributed to this report.

Watch State of the Union with Candy Crowley Sundays at 9am ET. For the latest from State of the Union click here.

Filed under: 2012 • Joe Biden • Mitch McConnell • President Obama • TV-State of the Union
soundoff (91 Responses)
  1. mario

    MCConnell will learn fast that a referendum will be on the gop congress and gop senate, can't wait to see his face in 2012

    October 23, 2011 02:21 pm at 2:21 pm |
  2. Drake in Vancouver

    Of course. That takes the focus off the Republican party.

    October 23, 2011 02:26 pm at 2:26 pm |
  3. Former Republican, now an Independent

    McConnell won't be surprised that the election will be a referendum. What he will be surprised about, is that the referendum will be about his party and how they have held the American public hostage, trying to promote the republican party's extremist agenda. It's time the Moderates and Independents speak loudly in the 2012 election and tell the republicans that we will not tolerate an agenda of NO! We want people in office that will work toward solutions, not obstruct progress.

    October 23, 2011 02:35 pm at 2:35 pm |
  4. Phillip

    Or more aptly a referendum on the Teapublicans non-performance. Where is a jobs' bill from them? All we hear is no, no, no not any action or solutions.

    October 23, 2011 02:43 pm at 2:43 pm |
  5. demogal

    I believe that the election will be a validation of President Obama and his leadership, not to mention a rejection of the "ickiness" of McConnell and all that he and his fellow "Repugnicants" represent.

    October 23, 2011 02:46 pm at 2:46 pm |
  6. Pa mom

    I agree this election will be a reflection on Obama's socialist agenda and the poor choice this country elected in 2008 BUT I think he gives too much credit to the citizens to see beyond the democtrats lies and understand economics. We are a nation of the entitled who do not yet understand, money does not grow on trees and living in a budget! God help us in the next election. The democrats have done a good job demonizing business people and those who have worked hard to earn their money. They may win this election by sheer dividing and conquering. Obama has done this since day 1 as president.

    October 23, 2011 03:00 pm at 3:00 pm |
  7. logic in LA

    As the worst Senator to happen to Washington since McCarthy, McConnell has a lot of nerve saying anything about this administration. He has not only demonstrated his disdain for everything Obama and his administration but has publicly said so. How has he any right to say what is working or not when he is proving to have no regard for the well being of anything but the Republican party.

    October 23, 2011 03:04 pm at 3:04 pm |
  8. Pa mom

    Obama and his cronies have done such a good job demonizing wall st yet it is such a little publicized fact that they do get a lot of their campaign monies from those very people. If you spend so much time blogging, look into his and others contributions. Obama has done exactly what he set out to do....break and divide this country, take away our liberties and make us another socialist nation. It hasn't worked for France or England but then, the citizens who love him don't follow the world economy....just want their handouts.

    October 23, 2011 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  9. shelbyanne

    IImpeach Mc Connell, traitors in congress have got to go

    October 23, 2011 03:10 pm at 3:10 pm |
  10. Tony

    Even if people are unhappy with Obama, why would they vote for Republicans? If people want the government to do nothing, giving Republicans the House is good enough. Thanks to Republicans, the government is already doing nothing domestically. Giving Republicans the White House or the Senate will change nothing, because the government will continue to do nothing.

    October 23, 2011 03:23 pm at 3:23 pm |
  11. abby

    McConnell and the other members of the GOP have been it abundantly clear through word and deed that they plan to do anything and everything to prevent Obama's re-election and to prevent the re-election and election of any Democrat. They have no regard for America. Their only and sole agenda is power and by that the money it brings. They have publicly stated it is their intent to destroy the Obama administration. If the American people (and by that I mean everyone but the wealthiest in America) is destroyed in the process it does not matter to them. McConnell and the GOP care naught for America. It's all about power and money. If the American people need to wake up and realize that the lies and actions of the GOP do not warrant their vote, 2012 will be a referendum and the end of the GOP.

    October 23, 2011 03:26 pm at 3:26 pm |
  12. normajean @ verizon ,com

    This person and his party made it quite clear from the beginning that they would not work with the Democratic party and intended to obstruct anything the president tried to do to restore financial success to the nation and its people.. They have made good on their voting and filibusters in putting down everything the country needs to get back on its feet. There is no concern on their part for you or yours, only theirs !!!!. They have done nothing constructive and have lost all personal honor and decency. Our president has worked hard and accomplished things that they refuse to give him credit for as they continue in their destruction of what used to be a great nation.... We WILL be a great nation again but it will take logic and intellegence from the voters as well as the White House. Too many people criticize without knowing facts. which are available but you won't get the truth from a few degrading voices that will say anything to keep their faces on TV. for millions of dollars,!!!, ,listen. think. It's YOUR future you're wisely!!!!!!

    October 23, 2011 03:33 pm at 3:33 pm |

    Yes it will be a referendum, on the GOP. Vote every GOPer and Tea Bagger out of office at all levels of government, federal,state and local! Save our great country, vote Democratic!

    October 23, 2011 03:34 pm at 3:34 pm |
  14. JoAnn

    We all know the deal McConell...your main agend is to make Pres Obama a 1 term pres.....bur Pres Obama has the "foot" soldiers & grass roots organizatons...we are ready for you & "your" boys and defeat in in 2013...NO SIR ITS A REFERENDUM ON YOU AND THE "GOOD 'OL BOYS NETWORK...LOL!!!

    October 23, 2011 03:36 pm at 3:36 pm |
  15. Mclandy Sunnyman

    The republican party is not for the middle class, it is well spelt out by the way they are obstruting all Obama's proposals.

    October 23, 2011 03:44 pm at 3:44 pm |
  16. BenHur

    I agree the referendum is that McConnell is to old, to dumb, to connected, and to out of touch with america. I will retract this assesment if he will tax-tax-tax-tax. What does he not understand about reducing the deficit?

    October 23, 2011 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
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