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Bill Clinton can't save you

People remember that Bill Clinton, for all his political talent, lost 54 seats in his first midterm election, at a time when unemployment was three percentage points lower than it is right now, right? That isn't to dispute his popularity or persuasive abilities, but presidential speeches just don't save midterm elections.

By Ezra Klein  | October 22, 2010; 2:21 PM ET
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It's good to have Bill Clinton in the news.

It nicely shows how President Clinton enacted policies that are essentially 100% opposite of what this current guy has enacted on almost every issue of the day.

Lowered Capital Gains taxes
No Health care Reform
Glass Steagall
No Kyoto protocol.
No union card carry.

Posted by: krazen1211 | October 22, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

The Democrats problem in this election is motivating their base. Say what you will about Clinton, but he motivates the base.

Posted by: wayward_va | October 22, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Indeed. Job and declining unemployment are the ONLY things that matter in the midterms.

Posted by: bakho | October 22, 2010 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Poor Journolister, you're truly clueless. There's a big difference between Bill Clinton of 1994 and the Clinton of 2010 and it's called a full record. People remember that, Clinton balanced the budget and left a trillion-dollar budget surplus. His policies lifted 7 million people out of poverty and created 22.5 million private-sector jobs. He is out campaigning because he has credibility with the people, something sorely lacking in the current democratic leadership. As for the loss in 1994, neither the Clinton white house nor the democratic congress has a warning of the incoming tsunami that swept lot of members out of office. Things are different today: the Obama white house and the democrats in congress have known for months that the mid-term will be difficult and what have they done about it besides talking down to the voters?

Posted by: alinosof | October 22, 2010 7:37 PM | Report abuse

Obama's speeches in the last few weeks have pretty cleared led to a major bump in several key elections such as PA. Clinton, by contrast, never had the credibility with his base to motivate them - see Krazen1211's nice list (and add welfare reform).

Posted by: michaelh81 | October 22, 2010 7:37 PM | Report abuse

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