The Republican National Committee is highlighting Democratic Congressional candidate Joe Garcia's comment last week when the former Obama administration official said that the White House "has not done enough" when it comes to foreclosures.
Garcia's comment, which also rapped Congress, is a no-brainer in the foreclosure-wracked Kendall-to-Key West district.
But it's campaign season, so any distance between the president and a Democratic candidate (especially one who worked for Obama), will get some notice. That's especially true in the battleground District 26 race against Republican Rep. David Rivera.
"Former Obama Administration Official: Obama Isn’t Doing Enough On Foreclosures," the RNC just said in an email concerning Garcia's comment.
The email, headlined "Trouble at Home for Obama?" also noted that Democratic Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown, the city's first black mayor, won't get involved with the reelection campaign of the the nation's first black president.
“Congress needs to do something aggressive because I don’t think the executive [branch] has done enough nor has the power to do it,” he said, noting that in some areas of the district, “every fifth home is in foreclosure.”
The failure of Obama's Home Affordable Modification Program, which the president touts on the campaign trail, was examined in a liberal-leaning book by Noam Scheiber called The Escape Artists: How Obama's Team Fumbled the Recovery:
The truth was that the administration never intended for HAMP to solve the housing problem. (It was Emmanuel who had pushed for the goal of 3 million to 4 million people, against the better judgment of the economists at Treasury and in the White House.) Instead, many in the administration, especially Larry Summers's orbit, viewed it as a simple play for time. "It was pretty clear that all it was going to do was at best kick the defaults down the road," said one White House economist.
Here's the RNC press release:
During a Democratic Primary debate in the swing 26th congressional district in Miami, former Obama Administration official Joe Garcia criticized President Obama:
“Congress needs to do something aggressive because I don’t think the executive [branch] has done enough nor has the power to do it,” he said, noting that in some areas of the district, “every fifth home is in foreclosure.” (Marc Caputo “Dems Rip David Rivera, then each other” The Miami Herald, 07/25/12)
In 2009, Garcia was appointed by Barack Obama as Director of the Office of Minority Impact for the Department of Energy, and later to a task force on Puerto Rico. Garcia’s comments track with a poll released earlier this year by left-leaning PPP which found that Florida voters “disapprove of Obama’s handling of housing mess”
Tampa Bay Times: “Fla poll: Voter disapprove of Obama's handling of housing mess” “An automated Florida poll by Public Policy Polling for the Campaign for a Fair Settlement, a network of labor and other Democratic leaning groups wanting more accountability for banks, found that only 36 percent of Florida voters approve of President Obama's handing of the housing and mortgage crisis. Nearly six in 10 agreed Obama ‘has not done enough to hold the banks accountable for their role in the housing collapse. ‘” (Adam C. Smith, “Fla poll: voters disapprove of Obama’s handling of housing mess”Tampa Bay Times 07/25/12)
Garcia’s comments come the same week that Jacksonville Mayor Alvin Brown, a Democrat who was elected with material support from Obama for America, refused to endorse President Obama’s reelection.
Tampa Bay Times: “Jacksonville's Democratic mayor won't back Barack Obama”