President Barack Obama and Democratic Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid held a closed-door strategy session at the White House on Monday to plan how to keep Republicans from seizing the Senate in November’s elections, an informed source said.
A source familiar with the meeting said Obama and Reid were joined by Democratic Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado, who chairs the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, and DSCC Executive Director Guy Cecil. The DSCC's job is to recruit, fund and elect Democrats to the Senate.
The source, who requested anonymity to described the meeting, characterized the talks as “productive” and said the group “reviewed the landscape and 2014 races.”
The White House had announced that Obama and Reid would meet but had not mentioned the more political elements of the discussion or that Bennet and Cecil would attend.
The discussions kicked off a heavily political week for Obama, who will host House Democrats for a reception and round-table discussion on Tuesday and address Senate Democrats at their annual retreat on Wednesday.
Republicans could retake the Senate if they capture six Democratic seats and lose none of their own. The sitting president’s party historically has suffered in second-term congressional elections.
White House press secretary Jay Carney had insisted that the meeting with Reid amounted to a routine conversation. “They meet all the time, they talk all the time,” he told reporters.
“There's no preplanned topic, and I assume anything that either individual wants to discuss will be discussed,” Carney said.