Tuesday following President Barack Obama’s final State of the Union address to Congress, a panel on CNN that included former Rep. Mike Rogers (R-MI) and Democratic strategist Paul Begala discussed what appeared to be Obama reacting to Republican presidential front-runner Donald Trump’s rhetoric during his address.
According to Rogers, Trump resonates with Democrats because he espouses sentiments about the economy and about the state of the federal government and warned Trump’s critics not to dismiss that.
“I think we’re missing one important point here,” Rogers said. “Donald Trump is appealing as much to Democrats as he is to Republicans. And anybody who misses this point by missing the folks on the street who are drawn to his campaign – he’s got this whole group of Democrats for Trump. It’s an economic issue. There will be a Republican candidate who can speak to these economic issues in a way that doesn’t offend average Americans. I think Nikki Haley proved that point tonight. That’s where you’re going to see the strength of this Republican Party. But the notion that this is the Republican Party imploding on itself — this is a Republican Party attracting Democrats, independents, Reagan Democrats to a message that says this town is broken. The institutions of government are broken. The economy is broken.”
Later in the segment, Begala responded to Rogers’ remarks and dismissed the notion there were Democrats coming over to the Republican side to support Trump.
“The notion that Trump is appealing to Democrats is myth, not math, tested the better part of today going through polls” Begala said. “Trump – he has a higher negative among Democrats than various forms of syphilis. I hate the guy. That’s why I want him to be the Republican nominee.”
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