It's no secret that Democratic candidates up for re-election this year have been running from being associated with President Obama amid his anemic approval numbers. It's also no secret that while many of those candidates don't wan't to be associated with him, they also don't want to be seen as abandoning their party's leader. That has led to some awkward exchanges. Enter Kay Hagan.
Hagan, the Democratic senator from North Carlolina, was asked Tuesday by MSNBC if she thought the president was a strong leader. Her answer was a rambling circle that included a him-haw reference to Obama having a lot going on.
“You know, President Obama has a lot on his plate,” Hagan told Kasie Hunt during a piece that aired on Thursday's “Morning Joe” show. “And it seems like, whether it’s the oil spill that took place earlier, a number of years ago in the Gulf, to this Ebola crisis now, to ISIS gaining strength, I mean, you look at all the combination of things like that.”
"Do you think he's acted as a strong leader in those crises?" Hunt interrupted.
“You know I think there's definitely-- Like with Ebola, we have definitely been late to the table in making decisions about that, being sure that CDC has a, has a-- understands and gets messages out to hospitals,” she said.
"So you don't think he's shown strong leadership?" Hunt recapped.
"Certainly there are issues where I certainly think no,” she finally responded.
When the camera cut to the MSNBC hosts, they seemed baffled.
"These are not hard questions to answer," Joe Scarborough quipped. To which Hunt responded, "Sometimes the simplest questions are the hardest."
The clip is reminiscent of Kentucky's Alison Lundergan Grimes refusing to answer if she voted for Obama.
Hagan is currently locked in a tight battle with Republican Thom Tillis, whom she leads by a minuscule 1.6 points according to the Real Clear Politics average.