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Is that on you?': ABC's Stephanopoulos confronts Obama over 'hollowed out' Democratic Party
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Is that on you?': ABC's Stephanopoulos confronts Obama over 'hollowed out' Democratic Party

ABC News' George Stephanopoulos forced President Barack Obama Sunday to take at least partial responsibility for a Democratic Party that had been "hollowed out" during his tenure.

During the interview on "This Week," the host noted that more than 1,000 congressional seats, Senate seats, governorships and state lawmaker seats have been lost since Obama first stepped into the Oval Office.

Indeed, the U.S. House of Representatives was comprised of 257 Democrats and 178 Republicans during Obama's first two years in office. Today, however, Republicans control the lower chamber 241-194.

In the U.S. Senate, Democrats held 57 seats while Republicans held 41 seats in 2009, the year Obama assumed office. Later that year, Republican Sen. Arlen Specter would switch parties, raising the Democrats' Senate majority to 58-40. The other two seats were occupied by Sens. Joe Lieberman (Conn.) and Bernie Sanders (Vt.), both independents who caucused with the Democrats, effectively bringing the liberal majority to a filibuster-proof 60-40. Eight years later, Republicans control the Senate 52-48.

But Democrats' numbers haven't been decimated in just Washington, D.C.

A similar trend has occurred in state capitals across the country: Democrats now control the lowest percentage of state legislative chambers they've controlled since the Civil War, according to CNSNews.com.

As for state governorships, Democrats controlled 28 of 50 governorships in 2009. Today, that number is just 16, as 33 governors are Republicans. Alaska's Bill Walker is currently the nation's only independent governor.

Stephanopoulos confronted Obama with these abysmal figures, saying, “It looks like the Democratic got pretty hollowed out on your watch. About a thousand seats lost in the Congress, Senate, governors, statehouses. Is that on you?"

Obama said he takes "some responsibility," but added that "some of it was circumstances":

If you look at what happened — I came in in the middle of the worst financial crisis since the Great Depression. I think we did a really good job in saving this economy and putting us back on the track of growth but what that meant was in 2010, there were a lot of folks who were still out of work. There were a lot of who lost their homes, saw their home values plummet, their 401(k)s plummet and we were just at the beginnings of the recovery and whoever is president at that time, he's going to get hit and his party is going to get hit.

(H/T: Right Scoop)

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