Krauthammer on how Obama's policies play in the midterms

How the president is impacting the elections


This is a rush transcript from "The Kelly File," November 3, 2014. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

MEGYN KELLY, HOST: We begin tonight with our own Charles Krauthammer, a syndicated columnist, Fox News contributor and author of "Things That Matter" which has sold more than a million copies.

Charles, welcome to you. And this is what I would like to start with.  You've got the New York Times, The Washington Post, The Daily Beast calling this the "Seinfeld" election, an election about nothing. And today, Steve Hayes of the Weekly Standard and a Fox News contributor comes out in a Weekly Standard and writes as follows. Quote, "This election is about the size and scope of government. It's about the rule of law. It's about the security of the citizenry. It's about competence. It's about integrity. It's about honor. It's about an electorate determined to hold someone responsible for the policy failures that have defined this administration and the scandals that have consumed it. And it's about time."

Your thoughts.

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, SYNDICATED COLUMNIST: Well, it is. I mean, this is a referendum on Obama's hyper-liberalism. In 2010 it was sort of aspirational. It was in legislation but hadn't been enacted yet. Well now we are six years in and we see the results of ObamaCare. We see the results of the stimulus, the worst recovery since the second World War. We see the results of this kind of overreaching government, which at the same time is incompetent. I don't have to go through all the scandals, all the failures abroad and at home. And this isn't only the party in government.  This is the party of government. This is liberalism on trial.

I can assure you that if the Democrats pull off a miracle and do well tomorrow night, Josh Earnest is going to be up there on the podium on Wednesday saying of course this was a national referendum on Obama and Obama-ism.  You say it isn't if you know you're going to lose.  

KELLY: And yet today we have Vice President Joe Biden predicting that the polls are wrong, that the Democrats will hold the Senate. Debbie Wasserman Schultz said the same. Let me give you a flavor. Here's Joe Biden.  


VICE PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN: First of all, I don't agree with the odd makers. I predict we're going to keep the Senate.  

REP. DEBBIE WASSERMAN SCHULTZ, D-FLA.: I agree with the vice president. We're going to hold the Senate tomorrow night.  


KELLY: Is that just wishing?

KRAUTHAMMER: Yes, it's wishing and spinning and trying to encourage people to go out and vote. So, perhaps they'll be a seat here and there, a marginal seat that they may win on turnout, on ground game. But I mean, it is of course an election about Obama, his record and his performance.

But also I think it shows you a couple of things. One is, I think the Republicans have run a fairly gaffe-free campaign. The gaffes have been on the other side, particularly this sort of overreach in the war on women which has become almost a joke in a place like Colorado where the Denver Post endorsed the Democrat's opponent calling Mark Udall "Senator Uterus" for going completely overboard with what they called an obnoxious one-issue campaign. You get Senator Landrieu, a female senator from Louisiana re-elected three times claiming a week ago that, you know, she's not doing that well because of the sexism that exists in the South.

It's becoming sort of a joke. Remember in the past it was Republicans who made the gaffes.

KELLY: Uh-huh.  

KRAUTHAMMER: On the women's issue, legitimate rape and other nonsense. And now even this small event happening, Senator Harkin in Arkansas, a fairly innocent remark about the appearance of Joni Ernst. This is just redounding on the Democrats because they were the ones who insisted in the war on women, in looking at every phrase, every word, every supposed insult or condescension to women. And now they're on the receiving end.  

KELLY: But why is it then, if this is about all the things that Steve Hayes outlined and the republicans have a better field of candidates in 2014 than they have had in the past couple of midterms. Why aren't they running away with it? Why isn't it very clear that there's going to be a wave election tomorrow?

KRAUTHAMMER: I think there are a couple reasons. One is they're running against particularly good and pedigreed Democrats. There were names, Begich in Alaska, Landrieu in Louisiana, Pryor in Arkansas. Udall is running in Colorado. And of course in Georgia you've got Sam Nunn's daughter and Jimmy Carter's grandson. These are fairly good candidates.  And the name carries a lot of weight. We think of ourselves as a Republican but there are a lot of monarchial tendencies as we see in the candidates in the Bushes all the way back to the Adams.

So, it isn't that easy a field. Wherever the Democrats have been able to localize the election to make it about the incumbent and that their pedigree and their attractiveness, meaning political attractiveness I should say, to be rather specific, they're doing rather well. To the extent that it is a nationalized election, the Republicans are doing very well.

KELLY: We shall find out soon, we hope. Could be as late as December or January. But Charles will be live with us tomorrow night as our coverage begins at 6:00 p.m.  

KRAUTHAMMER: I think it will be by midnight tomorrow.  

KELLY: Oh, I hope you're right. It would be great to have an answer one way or the other. We could go home and go to bed. We're supposed to be on air until 2:00. So, eat your Wheaties in the morning, Charles.  


KELLY: All right. See you then. Again, tomorrow night 6 p.m., that's when our coverage starts.

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