WASHINGTON, Jan. 25 (UPI) -- President Obama has named a top official in his 2012 U.S. re-election campaign to head the new White House Office of Political Strategy and Outreach.
The creation of the office, described as the place candidates and Democratic strategists will be able to call for help, and the appointment Friday of David Simas come as the party gears up for this year's congressional mid-term elections, Politico reported.
Simas headed polling and focus groups in the 2012 campaign cycle.
The November election is crucial for Obama's last two years in office.
Democrats now have what amounts to a 55-45 majority in the Senate, including two independents who caucus with the party. If Republicans gain a majority, Obama will be able to accomplish little that requires congressional approval.
Republicans control the House 233-200 with two vacant seats. Democrats hope to narrow the gap or even to reverse it, although the party that holds the White House historically has tended to lose seats in mid-term elections.
Politico said many Democrats have been frustrated by Obama's apparent lack of political engagement.