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Posted: September 20, 2010 06:25 PM

To defuse anger in the tea party and across the electorate, President Obama and his administration must first acknowledge it, argues Arianna.

Arianna and Howard Fineman, HuffPost's newest senior editor, appeared on "Hardball" Monday to weigh in on the midterm elections and President Obama's town hall remarks.

For too long the White House has touted its accomplishments and ignored middle-class suffering, Arianna explained.

"The president and his administration have for so long said how much they've done right that they're not really addressing where people find themselves," Arianna said. "They need to address that reality in which people are living. It's not just a matter of communications."

Beyond acknowledging voters' tempers and the high unemployment and foreclosure rates that they're living through, Obama and Democrats must offer real solutions and present them clearly, Arianna said. "They talk about jobs being a priority, but they haven't really produced a long list of suggestions."

Fineman argued that Obama must take a page from former President Clinton and lay out his plans more clearly.

"I hate to say it, [Obama] is still a professor some of the time," Fineman said. "He's trying, you see him trying. You want him to get over the hump with these people and really say as Bill Clinton would tell him to do, 'OK here are the three things we've done for you now.'"

During a town hall-style meeting on MSNBC Monday, Obama fielded a question from a middle-class supporter who confessed that she was "exhausted" from supporting him despite a lack of change.

Arianna said the president lacked a compelling response.

"100 million people in this country are now living at a standard of living that is not as good as their parents at the same age," Arianna said. "The middle class life has become a game of chance."

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