Democrats, Politics, Republicans — February 4, 2010 at 11:58 am

The Luntz pwnage and Democrats’ next steps


After my diary about the epic Frank Luntz fail spent most of the day at the top of the Rec List yesterday, I emailed Countdown with Keith to bring it to their attention. It seemed to fit in nicely with their segment about Luntz from the day before.

Sure enough, they picked it up and it was the subject of Keith’s only “Short Comment” last night. (Video HERE.)

It was a fun day. My blog got tons of hits and I didn’t realize that a Kos Tip Jar could fit that many tips. But now it’s time to move forward. We’ve had our laugh at Mssr. Luntz. But the fact is, as was pointed out by several folks in the comments, he doesn’t give a damn if we’re laughing at his mistake. He will continue to help the GOPosaurs eat the Dems’ lunch if they don’t get our messaging act together.

The question is: will they?

Okay, we’ve had our laugh. Now what? As I said in an earlier blog entry:

Now, tell me Mark Schauer and the Dems in general are going to use this to stick this “War is Peace/Hate is Love” message right up the backsides of Republicans across the country including right here in MI-07. They handed you a gift, Dems. Now YOU have to decide what you’ll do with it.

Don’t disappoint me, m’kay?

That’s it, right? Presented with the very playbook that the Republicans will use to defeat what should be a slamdunk issue for Dems, there is simply no excuse for them to not ram this up the backsides of every Republican who mouths a single sentence from that memo.

When a Republican uses the phrase “getting the treatment you need, when you need it”, Democrats should ram it right back down their throats with “It’s nice that you’ve learned to parrot Frank Luntz’ talking points. But how about getting uninsured Americans treatment PERIOD?”

When a Republican uses the phrase “One-size-does-NOT-fit-all”, Democrats should stuff it right back down their throats with “Yeah, I read that in the Luntz memo, too. How original. But what is your solution for those for whom there isn’t any clothing to try on because they don’t HAVE health insurance?”

When a Republican says, “President Obama wants to put the Washington bureaucrats in charge of healthcare. I want to put the medical professionals in charge, and I want patients as an equal partner”, Democrats need to ram it straight up their rear ends with “Ah. More Luntzspeak from the GOP, I see. Here’s the problem: you are LYING. There is absolutely nothing in this legislation that puts Washington bureaucrats in charge. In fact, it takes the power away from profit-driven insurance bureaucrats and puts it in the hands of patients right where it should be.

You get the picture.

They have the playbook. They know what they are going to do to win the game. Any sporting team coach in the country could win the game if he had the playbook. So, Dems, how about it? Are you going to take this gift — this pure and unadulterated GIFT — and use it to win the debate on financial sector and bank reform? Or are you going to let Frank Lutz and the GOPosaurs eat your lunch yet again and win the game? The choice really is yours.

I’m hopeful that the tide is changing. President Obama’s rhetoric in the past two weeks has been right on target and he’s giving what seem to be daily pep talks clinics to the Democrats. And they need it.

Rep. Mark Schauer set a good tone in his response to the Luntz memo:

To be clear, Frank Luntz is a paid consultant for Wall Street banks and big credit card companies, and this memo was written with one goal in mind – defeating a bill to end taxpayer-funded bailouts and clean up the mess on Wall Street.

As a small business owner himself, Mark understands the economic challenges entrepreneurs in Michigan are facing. That’s why he plans to support a new tax credit for businesses that hire more workers, and a measure that will make it easier for small businesses to obtain credit and expand their operations by taxing excessive bonuses at bailed out Wall Street banks.

That’s a great message but it falls into the same ditch that seems to plague Democrats on every damn issue. How about something a little shorter, a little sweeter and a little more to the point?

As a business owner himself, Rep. Schauer understands what small business owners need to be successful. Frank Luntz understands what the Republicans need to be successful. Unfortunately those two things are not the same. It is Democrats who are on the side of small business owners.

This is for keeps, Dems. You don’t have much time to turn the tide and make this happen before we’re into the midterm frenzy.

Don’t disappoint us, m’kay?

I’m just sayin’…