Skip to comments.Axelrod gives Dems their health talking points
Posted on 08/06/2009 7:37:41 PM PDT by smokingfrog
Senate Democrats are girding themselves for a month of vigorous debate over healthcare reform, armed with a new set of talking points from David Axelrod, the presidents chief political strategist.
Axelrod and Jim Messina, the White House deputy chief of staff, met with the Senate Democratic caucus Thursday afternoon to strategize over how to talk about healthcare during the August break.
Axelrod told lawmakers to focus on reform of the health insurance industry when talking to constituents in their states, said Democrats who attended the meeting.
Axelrod also instructed senators to talk about Democratic healthcare reform plans in comparison to the status quo. During a press conference last month, President Barack Obama warned that without reform, Americans costs will double over the next 10 years.
After the meeting, Axelrod told reporters: "I think that the American people understand that the status quo works very well for insurance companies. It doesnt always work well for them and I think that theyre going to be heard."
The White House officials also urged senators to stick to the game plan and not let themselves become distracted by criticism and town hall protests being organized by conservative and business groups.
Much more specific advice was to stick with what were doing and dont let them throw you off course, Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) told reporters when asked about Axelrods message to the caucus.
Democratic lawmakers watched videos of protesters disrupting town-hall meetings and discussed how they should react in similar situations.
Democrats have already begun to focus their rhetoric on health insurance companies. A strategy memo obtained by The Hill last week shows that leaders have developed a strategy to attack insurance companies.
(Excerpt) Read more at thehill.com ...
Socialist translation: Lies
Idiots. What they need to practice is an answer to the question “will congressmen, senators and their families also be enrolled in this health care system?”
If it isn't good enough for them then I don't want any part of it and will FIGHT to keep it from happening.
David Axelrod has long been known for his political magic. Through his AKP&D Message & Media consultancy, the campaign veteran has advised a succession of Democratic candidates since 1985, and he’s now chief strategist for Senator Barack Obama’s bid for President. But on the down low, Axelrod moonlights in the private sector.
From the same address in Chicago’s River North neighborhood, Axelrod operates a second business, ASK Public Strategies, that discreetly plots strategy and advertising campaigns for corporate clients to tilt public opinion their way. He and his partners consider virtually everything about ASK to be top secret, from its client roster and revenue to even the number of its employees. But customers and public records confirm that it has quarterbacked campaigns for the Chicago Children’s Museum, ComEd, Cablevision, and AT&T.
ASK’s predilection for operating in the shadows shows up in its work. On behalf of ComEd and Comcast, the firm helped set up front organizations that were listed as sponsors of public-issue ads. Industry insiders call such practices “Astroturfing,” a reference to manufacturing grassroots support. Alderman Brendan Reilly of the 42nd Ward, who has been battling the Children’s Museum’s relocation plans, describes ASK as “the gold standard in Astroturf organizing. This is an emerging industry, and ASK has made a name for itself in shaping public opinion and manufacturing public support.”
Lowest of Low Profiles
Eric Sedler, 39, a former public relations director at AT&T and corporate-reputation specialist at PR giant Edelman, is the “S” in ASK and the company’s managing partner. The “K” is John Kupper, 51, a former congressional press secretary and ad-industry consultant, while the “A,” of course, is Axelrod, a onetime Chicago Tribune reporter who got his start in politics when he managed Illinois Democrat Paul Simon’s first election to the U.S. Senate. Sedler says opponents mischaracterize what ASK does. “I reject the notion that a company can’t advocate a public policy,” he says. “These issues are complicated, and people have different points of view.” Axelrod, 53, did not respond to phone messages and e-mails.
Though the consultancies share managementKupper, like Axelrod, is also a partner at AKP&Dand loft space, the two firms come across as polar opposites. On its Web site, AKP&D lists dozens of candidates and referendums it has worked on. Sample ads are available for downloading. Employees are named. ASK’s site is minimalist, revealing little more than that its three partners do all their work themselves. Sedler says, in fact, that in his six years at ASK, he had never done an interview with the media before. “We’re not in a business that warrants a huge public profile,” he explains.
Axelrod’s political connections can cross over into his corporate business. Mayor Richard M. Daley, one of Axelrod’s friends and earliest clients, is pushing construction of a new Children’s Museum in Grant Park to replace a facility on Navy Pier that the museum says it has outgrown. So far, though, “open-space” foes such as Reilly have stymied the move. The museum retained ASK early in 2007. Sedler says Axelrod’s ties with Daley had nothing to do with the contract.
ASK is counseling the museum, which reports annual revenue of more than $11 million, including government grants, on its message strategy. It is also writing ads, including a 60-second radio spot that stresses how the new quarters would blend into Grant Park and be more accessible. Sedler won’t say how much ASK is receiving, joking that it’s “about 30¢ per hour.” Consultants at other PR firms say corporate clients pay monthly retainers of up to $25,000, though nonprofit groups usually pay less. In addition, firms typically get 15% of whatever clients spend on advertising.
ASK’s relationship with ComEd goes back much further: The Chicago-based utility says ASK has been an adviser since at least 2002. ASK’s workload picked up in 2005, as the Exelon subsidiary was nearing the end of a 10-year rate freeze and preparing to ask state regulators for higher electricity prices. Based on ASK’s advice, ComEd formed Consumers Organized for Reliable Electricity (CORE) to win support.
"We, the People" are the keepers of the Constitution, according to the Founders, and Jefferson said it was the people's tool "to bind them (government officials) down"--not the other way around.
What America needs right now are citizens, millions of them, who will peacefully remind their Congressmen and Senators that the Constitution makes them the servants of the people--not their masters.
Someone on this site referred to the proposed new legislation as "Plantation Health Care." The more the Administration and Congress follow the Axelrod playbook, the more they make it look like just that
Remember Spike Jones' "Never hit your Grandma with a shovel It makes a bad impression on her mind"?
I think I'm beginning to understand "shovel ready."
I dont think this plan will work. People are so angry..they aren’t listening to the talking points..they want their questions answered.
You can’t even really hear that woman in Tampa at the meeting tonight.
The list, ping
What happened to the Tampa Health Care thread? Anyone?
It got pulled. (Gannett) Someone should just post the YouTube link.
Found the YouTube video of the Tampa protest.
The mods should let the replies stand - there were some great ones in there...
Got it! Too bad a picture can’t be a tag - that’s a great one.
I sometimes wonder about that. Can’t they just edit the initial post and have a link only or something?
I wish someone would ask for some specifics such as:
What will the monthly premium range be for a single guy age 45?
What will the monthly premium range be for a couple, man age 70, wife age 65?
How will be premiums be collected?
There was so much good stuff on that thread I was going to bookmark it. Someone will appeal to the mods...
So the plan is to demonize Big Insurance, huh? That will only work if they can prove that their plan will be better than what folks have now.
So they will engage in demagoguery and demonization of the private sector (i.e., insurance companies) in order to foist their stealth plan to socialize medicine. Unfortunately, such a “populist” appeal will probably be effective with many people of little brain, such as those who voted in the Messiah last November.
This is a test.
The Chairman of the Board of Commonwealth Edison WAS...
William Ayers' daddy.
I wish - there was great stuff on that thread.
I have never in my entire life seen 3 more despicable men than Rahm Emanuel, David Axelrod and Barack Hussein Obama.
Why did the other one get pulled? Here is a longer one and it was put on You Tube by some idiot that thinks the protestors should be pepper sprayed. Read the comments and FREEP this guys comments on this video. Look at his profile, he thinks Obama is the black FDR and is a progressive socialist.
You know the sick thing is, that Axelrod has a disabled daughter who probably would be denied significant medical care under national health.
No matter: he’s wealthy enough to pay for his own. Betcha he’s got an exemption in there for her.
Why was it deleted?
Premiums are the least of my problems with this bill, there’s much more in there like the item about the government getting access to our checking accounts because they want to make it mandatory they take the money each month to pay the premiums.. sorry, I do not want them having their paws on my checking account...
The other shorter thread had a comment that a big part of the issue at Tampa was the organizers brought in SEIU to fill the hall before it began and didn’t allow locals to get in to the townhall and have their say... in other words, it was a set up to try and make it look like Tampa supports the bill... all the did (stupidly if you support the democratic party) was further inflame the growing number of pissed off people.
Ironies of ironies...
Axelrod - the inventor and Senior Aide to the president on “astroturfing”, dares to criticize a genuine grass root movement, and Obama, chief community agitator complains about people being agitated at the Obamination he wants to enslave us with.
But if the Dems put a dollar amount per month on premiums, maybe the folks who think it will be FREE will wake up. That’s all I was trying to point out. It won’t be FREE and it will come out of your account, whether you need the $$’s for food or rent or other payment. I envision a lot of overdrawn accounts, much to the delight of banks..
astro turff anyone?
It’s back... I’ll try to get you a link.