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Critz Camp: Obama a Liability, Won’t Attend DNC

Rep. Mark Critz (D-Cambria), left, will face off against Keith Rothfus in a district that is heavily anti-Obama.

Rep. Mark Critz (D-Cambria) said Tuesday that he will be campaigning in the 12th district in lieu of attending the Democratic National Convention this September in North Carolina.

In a report today by the Tribune-Review, Critz’s campaign team said the Congressman was steering clear of the President:

“Since I was elected, my focus has been on creating jobs for people here, rather than focusing on the agendas of the political parties in Washington,” Johnstown’s Critz said.

His campaign spokesman, Mike Mikus, said their internal polling shows the president is down double digits to Republican nominee Mitt Romney in the redrawn, six-county congressional district where Critz won a close victory against U.S. Rep. Jason Altmire of McCandless in the April primary. He will go against Republican Keith Rothfus, an Edgeworth attorney, in the general election.

That makes the decision to avoid the convention “pretty easy,” Mikus said. Moreover, he said, “it is fair to say” that Critz will not ask the president to campaign with him.

Critz has protested some of Obama’s policies, specifically his opposition to the Keystone XL pipeline and coal regulations. He’s also pro-life and pro-gun. At the same time Rothfus has sought to tie the two together, noting that Critz has voted 20 times against efforts to weaken or repeal Obamacare.

Jon Raso, Rothfus’s Campaign Manager, said that Critz’s latest decision represents a failed attempt at distancing himself from Obama’s record.

“Congressman Critz, like any typical politician, has decided not to attend the DNC only after ‘internal polling’ told him not to,” Raso said.

“He can run from President Obama all he wants but he can’t run from his record. This is just the latest ploy in Congressman Critz’s attempt to distance himself from the President in desperation of saving his political career.”

Critz’s decision to campaign makes the most sense politically – Obama lost the 12th district 54 to 45 percent in 2008, despite carrying PA by 10 points. This cycle, it’s expected to be one of the most competitive House races in the country. Rothfus is in line for over $1 million in ads from the National Republican Congressional Committee.

Many PA Dems, including Sen. Bob Casey and Rep. Mike Doyle (D-Allegheny) have already announced their intentions of attending the DNC.

9 Responses

  1. I think that the progressive wing of the democratic party thinks their views and agenda is the platform of everyone in the democratic party. This is obviously not so, nor will be so, and fairly obvious when you leave the coasts or large city areas. Some of these policies just simply are not marketable to a majority of the voters there and thus, it wouldn’t be advisable for anyone from west Virginia or western pa to go off the cliff trumpeting them. Instead of unmarketable policies (for these areas) camo beer coozies and NASCAR apparel would be much more successful.

  2. Okay Critz, either move to West Virginia or become a Republican! You should be ashamed of yourself! I hope the DNC will think you are a liability and not give you money. I’m sure if you would tell the people of Western PA everything that the President has accomplished and tried to do, they would support him1 Shame, Shame, Shame!

  3. For the first time in my life, I’m feeling the strong urge to simply vote out every incumbent, regardless of party affiliation.

    So sick of them all.

  4. Let’s stop with the fraud talk, ladies and gentleman. When is Keith the Candidate Rothfus going to come clean on his FEMA Beltway work, his work for the Faith Healer Pat Robertson? Why does Keith the Candidate take support from groups that want to Deindustrialize America in the name of FREE TRADE??

  5. This is an insult to the Democratic Party and all those that supported him. If he doesn’t want to be a Democrat, then he can run as a an independent, and let the Democrats nominate someone who isn’t embarrassed to be one.

  6. Oh come on, changing your stripes every election year is a democrat tradition. Too bad there still is transparency in spite of the obismal attempts.

    Time to clean the whole house when we remove the great mistake of ’08 in Nov.

  7. Give me a break!! If you are that offended by YOUR PRESIDENT AND PARTY LEADERSHIP quit or change parties. Also, refuse all monies from the DNC and DCCC. Critz is going down either way. His Union Masters back Obama 150%. What a fraud!!

  8. What a putz Critz is for not attending the DNC and being part of the Democratic party.

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