What a difference four years can make.
Democratic Sens. Claire McCaskill of Missouri and Jon Tester of Montana — among the most vulnerable Democratic U.S. senators running for re-election — are skipping their party’s national convention in Charlotte this summer, according to their campaigns.
While both lawmakers say they’re missing out on the chance to attend President Barack Obama’s formal re-nomination for president to concentrate on their own re-election campaigns, observers note that it makes sense for them to keep Obama at an arm’s length.
That differs from just four years ago when both attended the 2008 convention in Denver.
“I have seen Barack Obama in the Senate,” McCaskill said at the convention. “I have been by his side campaigning in diners and coffee shops. I know he will bring the change we need in Washington.”
Likewise, Tester appeared on MSNBC from the convention in 2008, bragging in one interview about flying on the same plane as Obama.
“I think Barack brings the kind of vision for this country that we need,” he said.