Obama Faces Defections Over Spending Plan

Wednesday, 13 Apr 2011 10:30 AM

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President Barack Obama is facing defections on the left over his plans to cut government spending. Some 60,000 disgruntled supporters have already promised not to contribute to Obama’s reelection campaign if he cuts Medicare or Medicaid, according to media reports.

obama, defections, spending, plan“The fundamental problem in our country right now is unemployment and a jobs crisis, not a deficit crisis,” Deepak Bhargava, executive director of the Center for Community Change, an advocacy group for the poor, told The Washington Post. “It appears the president is fighting on the wrong terrain and is conceding that the only thing we should be talking about is how to bring down the deficit.”

The White House is taking the threats on the left seriously. On Tuesday it sent Obama senior adviser David Plouffe to meet with progressive groups, sources told the Post. The Progressive Change Campaign Committee sent out an e-mail seeking commitments from supporters not to contribute to Obama’s reelection campaign and got 60,000 promises.

Adam Green, the group’s co-founder said, "Obama consistently expresses a preference for the progressive view, and then refuses to fight for it. We need him to draw a line in the sand," Politico reported.

MoveOn.org, a key Obama supporter in 2008, sent an e-mail to its 5 million members criticizing Obama’s budget deal with the GOP. MoveOn’s Justin Ruben told the Post the base could stay home in 2012.

“If the president and the Democrats don’t stand up to Republicans, I don’t see people coming out and doing the work that it would take to get them elected. If they came out to vote, these diehards might vote for the president, but whether they open their wallets and their hearts and their address books and hit the pavement, that’s a totally different thing,” Ruben said according to the Post.

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