Rahm Emanuel, a former top adviser to President Obama, defended his former boss' health care overhaul and seemed bewildered as to why 2020 Democratic candidates didn't defend it during Wednesday's debate.
"Here's what I don't get -- and I love my party but -- nine months ago, we made this the central issue that allowed us to take back the House and nine months later, everybody's got amnesia," the former Chicago mayor said of the 2018 midterm elections.
Emanuel made those comments while appearing on "The Late Show with Stephen Colbert" on Wednesday.
After President Trump rolled back significant portions of the Obama-era law, Democratic voters ranked the issue as one of their top priorities before 2018. "It's the most important thing and it's the most popular thing," Emanuel told CBS host Stephen Colbert.
Emanuel told Colbert that Obamacare was not only popular with Democrats, it was also popular with the country as a whole. "It's working," he added.
His comments added to the mounting criticism of Democratic candidates from media figures apparently baffled by the attacks that Biden faced on Wednesday. Both MSNBC hosts Joy Reid and Joe Scarborough suggested candidates messed up when they criticized the Obama administration.
"These candidates are attacking Barack Obama’s policy positions more than Donald Trump. That is politically stupid and crazy... Democrats who think trashing @BarackObama is a political winner, will be the political losers," Scarborough tweeted.
After leaving his post as mayor of Chicago, Emanuel has attempted to publicly guide Democratic candidates throughout the 2020 cycle.
Just before Wednesday's debate, he warned the 2020 field not to "fall into the traps that had many of us shaking our heads during the debates in Miami." In a Medium post, he specifically pointed to candidates offering free health care for illegal immigrants and the discussion about voting rights for the Boston bomber.