White House: Election Results Don’t Threaten Agenda

Posted November 4, 2009 at 10:15am

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs said Wednesday that President Barack Obama’s agenda is not imperiled by Democratic losses in the Virginia and New Jersey gubernatorial contests. Gibbs said he did not believe moderate Democrats would pull away from Obama’s policies out of fear for their political survival. “I don’t think they will— back away, Gibbs said. “I’m not concerned.—Gibbs indicated that the White House will not alter its politics or policies in reaction to the elections, saying only that voters showed they were concerned about the economy and that Obama would continue to focus on the issue.“That’s what the president has done and that’s what he’ll continue to do,— he said.Gibbs described the elections in Virginia and New Jersey as referendums on local issues. He noted the race in New York’s 23rd district, which was won by Democrat Bill Owens, was a contest for federal office that revolved around national issues related to Obama’s presidency. Even so, Obama campaigned in both states but avoided a trip to New York. Gibbs pointed out that Vice President Joseph Biden campaigned there and the president held a fundraiser for Owens.Gibbs said that despite Obama’s failure to translate his own popularity into victories for New Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine (D) and Virginia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Creigh Deeds, he is ready to campaign for Democrats in next year’s elections. “Since a lot of races in 2010 are Congressional and Senate races, I anticipate that he will play an active role,— Gibbs said.