President Obama's former top adviser said it was a "mistake" for the president to say "every one" of his policies was "on the ballot" this election, admitting the line hurt Democrats' chances at holding the Senate.


"I would not have put that line in there," former Obama adviser David Axelrod said on NBC's "Meet the Press" Sunday morning. "It was a mistake."

Red-state Democrats winced last Thursday when Obama gave the GOP fodder to tie them together.

"I am not on the ballot this fall…. But make no mistake: these policies are on the ballot," Obama said in a Chicago speech. "Every single one of them."

Republicans rushed to get Obama's comments into ads blasting red-state Senate Democrats whose fates will likely determine control of the upper chamber. Those ads are already airing in three states — Kansas, Kentucky and New Hampshire — and similar ads are likely coming in other races.

Axelrod said the comments came in a larger context of pushing "forward-looking" economic fairness, which is important for Democrats.