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President Obama / Saul Loeb, AFP/Getty Images

President Obama is telling Democrats to de-emphasize the 2016 presidential election - for now - and focus on the congressional elections coming up in November.

Referring back to big Republican wins in 2010, Obama told Democrats in Boston on Wednesday night that too often their voters don't get out in the mid-term congressional elections.

"People tune out, and because the electorate has changed, we get walloped," Obama said at a Democratic National Committee fundraiser. "It's happened before, and it could happen again if we do not fight on behalf of the things we care about in this election."

Republicans won control of the U.S. House in 2010, and are seeking control of the U.S. Senate in November.

The key to non-presidential elections is voter turnout, Obama said in Boston.

"In the midterms, Democrats too often don't vote," Obama said. "Too often, when there's not a presidential election, we don't think it's sexy, we don't think it's interesting."

People are already talking about who might replace Obama when his second term ends in early 2017, with former secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and others eyeing the 2016 election.

But it's too soon for everybody else to concentrate on 2016, Obama told the DNC.

"Nobody is going to be more invested than me in having a Democrat succeed me, to consolidate and solidify the gains that we've made during my presidency," Obama said. "But right now, we've got to make sure we're fighting in this election."



Copyright 2014 USATODAY.com

Read the original story: Obama to Democrats: Focus on 2014, not 2016

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