If Democrats are distraught over the effect President Barack Obama is having on this year's congressional elections, they have no one to blame but the person in the mirror.
As we get closer to Election Day, there has been a spate of stories about how the president is failing to connect with white working class voters.
Duh! Many of these same white working class voters, and white women voters (another group the Democratic Party is failing to reach out to or gain support from this election cycle) were among the 18 million who voted for then-Sen. Hillary Clinton.
It's not just that Obama came seemingly out of nowhere to topple the heir apparent to the Democratic presidential nomination.
It's also that party leaders proceeded to try to push her out of the race (think Vermont Sen. Patrick Leahy) before the primary process was over and before she was ready to give up.
Let's not forget that Hillary Clinton won primaries in many major, working class, blue collar states such as Pennsylvania, Indiana and Ohio, precisely where Democrats are now in big trouble.
"They are the voters who have pulled away most sharply (from the Democrats)," says Democracy Corps pollster Stanley Greenberg, who has long written about blue-collar voters. "The president looks inattentive to them, and his approval is lowest with white working-class voters, who are seriously alienated from the elites.
"But they are open to populist arguments about what's happening, even though they are critical of Democrats as too aligned with Wall Street, not Main Street.
The Democrats have not convinced white working-class voters that they are with them in this crisis."
In West Virginia, Gov. Joe Manchin is paying dearly for his support for the president because it is a state where blue-collar workers reign supreme. Politico reports that Manchin's advice to the president is: "Go to where they live and work. Listen. And don't talk down to them."
Is Obama capable of not talking down? It's a serious question, especially in tough economic times. Obama is who he is. This is one Ivy Leaguer who sees Obama as being as Ivy League as Ralph Lauren's designer line.
He furthers arguments that he foments class divisions by supporting a continuation of the Bush tax cuts for some economic groups but not for others.
Politico reports: "In the two weeks before the Nov. 2 midterms, Obama has focused on helping his party energize its demoralized base, traveling to seven states that delivered him double-digit margins of victory two years ago and to comfortable venues like big-city stadiums and university campuses.
But in the process he is also reliving one of the few unsuccessful phases of his campaign -- the spring of 2008, when Sen. Hillary Clinton struck a chord with white blue-collar voters in West Virginia, Ohio and Pennsylvania."
It's a little too late for that. The influence of the Tea Party during this election cycle is scary, because some of its candidates seem truly extreme. But by jumping on Obama's campaign wagon so early in 2008, Democrats set themselves up for the problems they are experiencing now.
Add to that the president's economic stimulus bill did little to help blue-collar workers find work, and his image as being big on talk and less committed to political principle is exacerbated. As one friend said, the Clintons must be laughing up their sleeves.
But many voters don't find this situation very funny.
Bonnie Erbe is a TV host and writes this column for Scripps Howard News Service. E-mail bonnieerbe@CompuServe.com.