Webb seems less at home today. He identifies himself as a Democrat. But he has few Democratic leaders to identify with. He won’t say this. His criticism is discernibly girdled. He begins to tell a story about a conversation with a Democratic leader and pulls back. “I don’t want to talk about that,” he mutters. “I have had my discussions. I’ve kept them inside the house. I did not want to have them affect this election, quite frankly. I didn’t want to position myself in the media as a critic of the administration.”…

“A lot of people in this country, when they look up here, they want to see leadership. They want to see credibility. And they are not always the same thing,” Webb says. “The healthcare issue really took away a lot of the credibility of the new leadership–Obama particularly–the Reid-Pelosi-Obama trio.”…

This independent problem returns Democrats to their white problem. Most non-aligned voters are white. White males constitute the plurality of independents. These are the Reagan Democrats. Webb does not see himself as their spokesman. But he is one of the few Democrats able to speak as one of them.