Tags: | Barack Obama | begich | alaska | obama | irrelevant

Begich: I Voted For Obama, But 'The President's Not Relevant'

By    |   Thursday, 23 Oct 2014 07:27 PM

Alaska Democratic Sen. Mark Begich admits he voted for President Barack Obama in 2008 and again in 2012, but says it doesn't matter because Obama is "not relevant" anyway.

"I did, but that's irrelevant," Begich told The Washington Examiner for a Thursday story."The president's not relevant. He's gone in two years."

Begich is being challenged in Alaska by Republican Dan Sullivan in one of the battleground states that could determine control of the Senate after the Nov. 4 midterm elections. Sullivan and other Republicans have slammed the incumbent senator for supporting most of Obama's policies that have come to a vote in the Senate

The senator denied their claims, telling The Examiner that most of his votes were for nominations and were not indicative of his partisanship.

"Where I disagree with Obama is many places," Begich said. "Obama tried to take away our F-16s in Fairbanks. I disagreed with him. He wanted to fund the rebels in Syria. I disagreed with him. He wanted to do the gun control bill. I disagreed with him."

Earlier this week, Begich joined the ranks of other Democrats who were refusing to say whether they'd voted for Obama.

Many Democratic candidates are shying away from direct associations with the increasingly unpopular president, whose approval ratings are hovering around 40 percent.

On Sunday in Maryland, Obama made a rare appearance on the campaign trail /at a rally to support the Democratic candidate for governor in Maryland, but many in the audience left early — underscoring his continuing unpopularity.

That support is especially low in Alaska, where a recent CNN/ORC poll shows just 33 percent of the red-leaning state's voters approve of Obama's job performance.

In other races, Democrats like Kentucky's Alison Lundergan Grimes are refusing to say whether they supported Obama, but Begich, who also has refused to the answer the question now says it's up to others to decide if they want to acknowledge their votes.

"Some senators don’t want to respond to that," he said. "I don’t know, that’s their decision, not mine."

Further, he said that even though he's "disagreed plenty" with Obama, "that's not an issue to me. It's where we are today, it's the next six years. He's gone in two. Whoever's the next U.S. senator will be dealing with a new president. That's the bottom line."

But Begich said he knows Sullivan will bring up the question, and if he does, he'll remind him that his campaign has "all been about what Obama's done."

Instead, he wants to know what he'll ask Sullivan, and that is what he "is going to do for Alaska, because I can tell you what I've done. You’re living in the past, and it can’t be all about national issues. People care about Alaska issues."

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Alaska Democratic Sen. Mark Begich admits he voted for President Barack Obama in 2008 and again in 2012, but says it doesn't matter because Obama is "not relevant" anyway.
begich, alaska, obama, irrelevant
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2014-27-23
Thursday, 23 Oct 2014 07:27 PM
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