Speaking in an interview with MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” on Wednesday, former White House adviser David Axelrod delivered a harsh wake-up call to Republicans.
“[We’ll have to see] whether the Yohos of the world control the nominating process. If they do, they are not going to win a national election, ” said Axelrod.
referencing Representative Ted Yoho (R-Fla.), Axelrod admonished the Republican’s past statements made on the fiscal cliff.
“The most frightening moment yesterday was congressman Yoho … when he said in an interview that he thought that all this talk about catastrophe if we go over a cliff is ‘media hype. If that kind of thinking prevails, we are going to have really big problems,” Axelrod said.
Before making his comments regarding the 2016 elections, Axelrod did specify note that he thought Republicans could maintain their House majority during the 2014 election, saying, “Structurally I think they are set up okay for 2014. But we’ll see.”
Both Democrats and Republicans have spoken out against the conservative wing of the Republican Party, who remain the driving force behind the plan to use the government shutdown and debt ceiling debates as leverage to defund Obamacare. Critics of that plan have not only spoken out against those conservatives, such as Yoho and Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas), but also against those not associated with the conservative wing of the GOP, such as Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-Ohio).
Axelrod expanded on his predictions about the 2016 elections in an article on NBC Politics, where he posited that moderate voters are more likely to vote Democrat in upcoming elections if the GOP continues down the path it is currently on.
“The rightward and backward-looking bent of the GOP has driven many of these voters away, and alienated emerging, minority communities,” he noted, making implications not only about the government shutdown, but also hard-line conservative stances on abortion, gay marriage, and gun control.
He did warn that Democrats could lose moderate voters if Republicans swing the focus back to issues of growth and fiscal responsibility, before offering some advise, “To maintain their comparative advantage, Democrats must continue to advocate for pragmatic, future-oriented plans to spend responsibly while investing wisely to promote growth, opportunity and a thriving middle class.”