FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
With the midterm elections only three weeks away, some Democrats are running scared - from their own president.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/10/12/art.chris.jpg caption="Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-MD)"]
Take Rep. Bill Owens, who won a special House seat in a conservative upstate New York district last year. He's out with an ad declaring that he voted with "the Republican leader 63 percent of the time." A Democrat bragging about how he's voted with the Republicans.
And he's not the only one. Other vulnerable Democrats have been promoting their votes against some of President Obama's signature pieces of legislation, such as health care and the stimulus bill.
One Democrat's campaign ad goes so far as to show the candidate shooting a bullet through the cap-and-trade legislation. Another uses an ad to tout his support of former President George W. Bush's Medicare plan.
But the Democrats claim this is all good. The lawmaker in charge of keeping control of the House - which is a tall order this election season - says this is actually a sign of his party's strength. Come again?
Rep. Chris van Hollen, D-Maryland, insists the Democrats are proud to have "an ideologically diverse caucus." He says members who voice their opposition to the president are showing their independence on certain issues.
Van Hollen says Democrats have a big tent, and they're problem-solvers. Maybe. But the White House has to be at least a little nervous that Democrats are distancing themselves from the president and some of his key initiatives.
Interested to know which ones made it on air?
Steve in Virginia writes:
When politicians base their positions and platforms on polls and the flavor of the month, then sure it's OK for the Dems to run against their own president. Much like the Republicans did against George W. Bush during 2006 and 2008. Politicians don't run on personal principles and/or convictions… It's now all about whatever it takes to be re-elected.
This running from the president should bother everyone. It just goes to prove what cynics have been saying for some time: politicians are there to support themselves! They'll change directions, parties, whatever. They want to stay in office. Power, prestige, money, must be a hard habit to break!
Simon in Florida writes:
Well, they certainly can't run on their records. The Democrats' control of Congress has been as big a disaster as the Obama presidency.
Karen in Idaho writes:
Dear Jack, I'd rather have a congressperson who is honest enough to express his/her own viewpoint. What has ruined our government are people who cannot compromise, think for themselves, or support the ideals of their constituents and who vote only a "party line."
Melissa in Memphis, Tennessee writes:
It's a good idea, sure. Be a proud Democrat when no one is looking; be ashamed when someone asks what you have done.
Yes, if they want. Doesn't mean they'll get the vote though. Jack, I just love how you try to skew things so they look bad, just like the fear-mongering Republicans. Two years ago, you were an objective reporter, until you realized that objectivity doesn't sell so you started to try to cause trouble. I'm disappointed in you.
Steve in Florida writes:
Whatever it takes to keep from handing the matches back to the arsonists is fine by me. The end justifies the means. And I'd bet Obama would say exactly the same thing.