Rep. Nick Rahall (D-WV) on Wednesday said he wasn’t the biggest fan of President Obama because of how the administration’s policies have impacted West Virginia.
“I probably have supported George Bush more than I have Barack Obama,” Rahall told The Hill when asked if Obama was good for his state. “Am I going to switch parties because of that? No. I’m a Democrat, born a Democrat, am a Democrat and will die a Democrat.”
Rahall explained that he places his state above his party when it comes to supporting Obama.
“I will support him when he’s good for West Virginia, and I will oppose him when he’s bad for West Virginia,” Rahall said.
The congressman is facing a tough re-election in 2014 and has already been hit by Republican ads over Obamacare. Rahall supported the law, but was critical of the glitchy rollout.
He was one of 39 Congressional Democrats who voted for a Republican bill in November that would have let people keep their insurance plans that did not meet the standards set by the health care law.
Rahall lamented to The Hill that he has been linked to Obama by his critics.
“There’s no question my critics try to blame Obama-Rahall for everything,” he said. “I mean, the snow blitz that’s coming tonight is probably Obama-Rahall’s fault. And they won’t have that to do two years from now, so it’s obvious they’re leaving no stone unturned to defeat me this time. Because it’s the last time they’ll have Obama around! It’s that simple.”
But although Rahall said that Obama’s policies are not always best for West Virginia, he is not entirely opposed to the Affordable Care Act.
“I don’t think I need to call for more fixes. … I think I need to call for more bipartisanship from the other side, instead of just repeal, repeal, repeal. Because that’s not going to fix anything,” he said.
“I have always said in my 38 years here I have never seen a perfect law, and the [Affordable Care Act] is not a perfect law. But it’s not going to be repealed. Not now. Not never. So let’s face reality, my friends, and let’s try to work together to fix it.”
West Virginia Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin (D) decided to expand the state’s Medicaid program under Obamacare.