Onetime senior White House advisor David Plouffe sees the special election in Florida’s 13th Congressional District as a “screaming siren” for the Democratic Party heading into November’s midterms.
Plouffe does not feel Obamacare was the issue, writes Mike Dorning of Bloomberg, but an enthusiasm gap among Democratic voters.
“We have a turnout issue,” Plouffe said on “Political Capital with Al Hunt” for Bloomberg Television. “This is a screaming siren that the same problems that afflicted us” in 2010 when Democrats lost control of the House, saying it “could face us again.”
Republican David Jolly won against Democrat Alex Sink 48.4 to 46.6 percent in the Pinellas County congressional seat following a bitter conflict featuring competing television ads focused on Obamacare.
The special election turnout was half that of the 2012 presidential race, which Obama won by 1.5 percent and then-U.S. Rep. C.W. Bill Young winning re-election.
Former Republican U.S. Sen. John Sununu calls the CD 13 vote a hint of the discontent over the Affordable Care Act, something that “will drive the election that it’s a loser for Democrats.”
“Special elections in a run-up do generally point to where the trend is headed,” Sununu told Bloomberg.
Plouffe counters by pointing out that Sink’s message was fixing the problems with Obamacare instead of ending the health law, a theme that resonated with “traditional swing voters.” He attributed the loss to higher Republican than Democratic turnout.
A March 7-10 Bloomberg National Poll found 34 percent of Americans favor repeal of Obamacare, a law was enacted to provide health insurance coverage to millions of uninsured Americans. More than half (51 percent) favor keeping the law with “small modifications”; 13 percent would leave it alone.
Those that would repeal the ACE are most passionate, and they are most likely to vote—with 73 percent saying that they will “definitely” vote.
Seventy-three percent of respondents that favor repealing Obamacare said the law would be a “major” factor in their vote while only 45 percent of those supporting modifications and 33 percent who want to keep Obamacare as is.