David Axelrod and two other senior advisers to President Barack Obama briefed the House Democratic Caucus today, outlining the president’s nine-state campaign strategy and showing the group political ads, according to sources in the meeting.
The meeting comes less than four months before Americans go to the polls, and as Democrats try to present a unified front, despite occasional disharmony between the president and Congressional Democrats.
Axelrod was joined in the hour-and-a-half meeting by Obama senior adviser Broderick Johnson and the president’s director of opinion research, David Simas.
The group spoke about the president’s re-election strategy, which focuses on winning Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Nevada, New Hampshire, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Virginia.
The campaign is spending some $24 million on ads in those states this month targeting Obama’s presumptive challenger, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, and the group played some of those ads in the meeting.
“They absolutely reminded us of the achievements of this administration,” Rep. Robert Andrews (D-N.J.) said after the meeting. “They also educated us about some things about Mitt Romney’s record that I frankly didn’t know,” he added, noting that they told the Caucus that while Romney was governor of Massachusetts, the state ranked first in state debt and 47th in job creation out of all 50 states.
“This is a guy that runs around the country talking about, ‘I know how to create jobs and I know how to cut debt.’ Well, evidently, he had a four-year period of amnesia when he was governor of Massachusetts,” Andrews continued.
The meeting comes the same day Karl Rove’s super PAC, Crossroads GPS, debuts a $25 million anti-Obama ad blitz across nine states, including some of the same states Obama is targeting.
Democratic Caucus Vice Chairman Xavier Becerra said that Obama’s advisers also gave a presentation about jobs and the economy and combating attacks from Republicans.
“The president’s team focused on moving the country forward, talked about all the things that have been done to take us from this economic abyss that we found ourselves in to the point where now, after 28 consecutive months of job growth, we see over 4.5 million Americans back at work,” the California Democrat said. “They talked about how they’re going to continue that and they’re going to battle against the disinformation that may come out from the other side.”
A short question-and-answer session followed the meeting.
The group was also introduced to Lee Saunders, the new president of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees, although that portion of the presentation was separate from that of the Obama advisers.