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Virginia Politics
Posted at 03:59 PM ET, 11/04/2011

Webb pressed on whether he’ll campaign for Obama

For a retiring senator, James Webb has gotten a lot of attention this week.

On Tuesday, Politico reported that the Virginia Democrat — who has disagreed with some President Obama’s proposals to raise income taxes for the wealthy — “wouldn’t even say” whether he would be willing to stump for Obama in Virginia next year.

Then Jonathan Karl asked Webb the same question on camera for an installment of ABC News’s “Subway Series.”

“We’ll see what that looks like next year,” Webb told Karl, later adding: “I’m not saying that I won’t. ... I’m saying I’ve been out there all this year for state races. I’m a Democrat.”

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ABC notes that Webb “later followed up to clarify” that he supports Obama: “I am a member of the Democratic Party. President Obama will be our nominee, and I will support him.”

Webb has never been known to enjoy campaigning, whether for himself or anyone else, but he has cut ads and headlined events for several Virginia legislative candidates this year.

Beyond opposing part of Obama’s agenda, Webb has also been frustrated by the Senate’s rejection of his bill to create a national commission to recommend reforms of the criminal justice system.

.On Tuesday, Webb delivered a lengthy speech on the Senate floor decrying “the lamentable decline in bipartisan behavior in this body.” Webb noted his frequent efforts to work across the aisle on other issues and complained about Republicans’ unwillingness to do so on his criminal justice bill and other pressing issues.

“People in this country are looking for leadership,” Webb said. “And obstructionism is not leadership.”

By  |  03:59 PM ET, 11/04/2011

 
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