Blue Dog Democrat Jim Matheson (D-Utah) told CBS News' John Dickerson that members of the moderate Democratic coalition are the "true Democrats because we wear that label even when it may actually effect us in a negative way in our elections," on "Washington Unplugged" Tuesday.
"At the end of the day if people want to question the Democratic credentials of the Blue Dogs," Matheson said, "I'll tell you what, by Blue Dogs running as Democrats we face a handicap in running in our districts. There are other people who by running as a Democrat they automatically win."
Asked to describe the coalition, who is facing heat amidst low poll numbers for President Obama, Matheson called his colleagues "more pragmatic people trying to make progress...not ideologues."
"They are the least ideological people in the House of Representatives," he explained.
On why the Blue Dogs are blue, the congressman said: "The Blue Dogs were choking on the ideology of both parties so much they decided they wanted to create their own group and try to reflect what's a more moderate point of view."
Watch the full interview as well as a roundtable with CBS News chief White House correspondent Chip Reid and Politico's Mike Allen on the challenges ahead for President Obama.
"Washington Unplugged" appears live on CBSNews.com each weekday at 12:30 p.m. ET. Click here to check out previous episodes.
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