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Video: DNC chair: Obama is still doing ‘great work’

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    >>> former virginia governor tim kaine is the chairman of the democratic national committee . governor, good to see you. good morning.

    >> matt, good to be back.

    >> so the president is out there campaigning for some candidates. others don't want anything to do with him. i want to take you back to election night 2008 in that scenic grant park when the president walked out onto that stage. i mean, you had to hope -- democrats had to hope -- this was going to be a president who was going to open up new political territory for the party. and here you've got a president and some candidates don't want to be seen with him. what happened?

    >> well, i think the candidates who are worried about it are making a mistake because i think this president still is doing the great work that the americans expect of him. the president and i met a month after that in grant park , and we talked about the fact that midterms will be very tough because they always are. since teddy roosevelt was president, the average midterm involves the party in power losing 28 house seats, losing 4 senate seats. and look, it's a tough time economically, and that means it's volatile. but the democrats have been doing the work necessary to get the nation going again. as the president says, the car was in the ditch. we're getting it out of the ditch with job creation , with a new energy strategy, with infrastructure investments.

    >> let me talk about you -- you bring up jobs. let's talk about that. here's what frank rich wrote in the paper over the weekend concerning the democrats' prospects for the midterm elections . he said, quote, they are doomed to fall short if they don't address the cancer in the american heart , and that's joblessness. we saw the latest figures come out. 9.5% unemployment as of friday. even if there is a series of small miracles between now and the midterm elections , governor, you know that number is going to be unacceptably high when people go to the polls. so why shouldn't they hold democrats accountable?

    >> because, matt, what is the alternative? when the republicans were in control during the last decade, americans lost 8 million jobs. we gained 700,000 private sector jobs this year. we're growing again. and what is the republican strategy? they're saying they just want to go back to doing what they did during the lost decade , relax regulation, tax cuts for the wealthiest, and stand by as the economy collapses. that's no central strategy. we built a ladder. we're climbing and we're going to do it with smart investments, a green economy , infrastructure investments. america needs to go forward, not backward.

    >> we heard from you in the last few minutes and the president as of late which seems to be the developing strategy for the last three months of this campaign season. and in many ways, trying to attach the republican party to the more extreme elements of the tea party , but also, as the president has said, there's a lot of blame bush going on, looking back to those eight years. is that what the voters want to hear, in your opinion?

    >> well, i think, matt, what they mostly want to hear is the record of accomplishment. and so whether it's health reform that helps the middle class with medical bills, credit reform, wall street reform or recovery that's investing in green energy and made in america jobs, we always lead with the things we've done. but you have to draw a contrast. when a republican party says that their main strategy is to go back and do the things that put the american economy in a freefall, the election in november is about a choice. it's a choice between going forward or embracing the policies that put the american economy in the ditch that we're still climbing out of. and that's the choice that we're going to make clear.

    >> quickly, governor, before i let you go, i'm going to give you a new job. you are now a political travel agent . and if you had the chance -- if you had a do-over here and you could have planned the first lady's vacation with sasha, would you have planned the trip that we've just seen her take given the current economic conditions, or do you think that was much ado about nothing?

    >> matt, i think it's wrong to talk about the first lady's family vacation as a politician. she's a mom. and you know, look. i've been in elected office and political life for 17 years, and i've got a wife and i've got three kids. and when you're in office, you don't give up being a mom and a family member, too. this was an opportunity for michelle to join friends and friends' daughters with a vacation with her kids and give them some exposure to a part of the world that they hadn't been before. and i don't think you talk about that and give it political analysis . i'm glad that both the president and first lady are so focused on being good parents.

    >> dnc chairman tim kaine . governor, thanks very much for your time this morning. i appreciate it.

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