Top Bill Clinton Flack Paul Begala: 'Dems Should Not Try to Spin' Alex Sink Loss
After Democrats tried to spin Republican David Jolly's win in a House special election on Tuesday in their favor, Paul Begala, one of former President Bill Clinton's top spinmeisters, told them to stop.
Jolly, regarded as a weak candidate and outspent by his opponent's campaign, won a special election in Florida's 13th congressional district that was regarded as a bellwether for this fall's midterm elections.
Jolly beat Alex Sink, the last Democrat who was elected statewide in Florida, even though he was trailing by three points in a Public Policy Polling poll a week before the election and had the GOP establishment throwing their own candidate under the bus in advance of what could be a potential loss. Jolly's win may signal how damaging Obamacare and Obama's brand may be to Democrats in the fall's midterm elections.
President Barack Obama won the district twice, by four points in 2008 and by a point in 2010. Sink also won the district in her failed 2010 gubernatorial campaign, which was also a year in which Democrats were disadvantaged because of the Tea Party wave that historically gave back the House GOP its majority.
But Democrats somehow claimed after Sink's loss that Republicans underperformed because Jolly was running against Obamacare.
"Republicans underperformed because the only message they offered voters – repealing the ACA – is out of touch and failed to bring them close to their historically wide margins," the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee spun.
Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) also claimed Obamacare hurt Jolly in the race.
“Tonight, Republicans fell short of their normal margin in this district because the agenda they are offering voters has a singular focus - that a majority of voters oppose - repealing the Affordable Care Act that would return us to the same old broken health care system," she said.
There was at least one Democrat, though, who would not engage in such spin. Begala simply said that Democrats "should not try to spin this loss."