Making her MSNBC debut Tuesday, Jen Psaki sat with “Alex Wagner Tonight” to discuss the upcoming midterm elections and, while admitting that democrats have had plenty to celebrate these last few weeks, she emphasized that they have “a long way to go” to maintain control of the House and Senate.
“While I think a lot of democrats are feeling better – as they should – there’s a long way to go here,” she said. “If the election were tomorrow, I think the House would be an uphill battle. That would be a bit of a leap. The Senate is more of a tossup, but there’s different dynamics in each of these races that we should be paying close attention to.”
The dialogue came on the heels of Psaki and host Alex Wagner discussing the reasons democrats should be “feeling better” of late, including the widespread blowback on the Supreme Court’s decision to remove abortion as a constitutional right.
“These midterms may end up being a referendum on republican power more so than democratic power. Do you see it that way?” Wagner posed.
“Absolutely,” Psaki said. “And that is remarkable if you think about it. If you look back on the NBC poll in January, Democrats were not that into the midterms. They just weren’t that into it.”
But Psaki said that that that sentiment has “largely flipped” because democrats are seeing steps like the abortion ruling as a sign that their “basic freedoms are being infringed upon.”
“The anger is among the members of the Democratic Party, which is the party in power, which is so rare for that to be the case,” she posited. “People are enthused, they’re engaged, they want to get out and vote, they want to participate in the process.”
The last time Psaki saw such uniformed anger coming from democrats was in their electoral fight against former president Donald Trump – a figure who, of course, still looms over these upcoming midterms and the 2024 presidential election.
“Nothing’s more of a driving and excitement factor like Donald Trump for democrats,” Psaki said. “They love to be opposed to him – because they are. Independents, many, don’t want to see another reign of Trump. And the more he engages in the race, the more he puts himself out there, the more it’s a reminder of what’s at stake to people.”
Watch a clip from Psaki’s “Alex Wagner Tonight” segment in the video above.