Editore"s Note
Tilting at Windmills

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September 18, 2009

TAKING THE OFFENSIVE.... It's pretty obvious the Republican base is fired up about defeating health care reform. According to a Salon report, the DNC has a new television ad that signals a new effort to get the Democratic base excited, too.

Yesterday, President Obama spoke at the University of Maryland about the reform campaign, and today, the DNC uses footage from the event in a minute-long spot. The DNC's Brad Woodhouse told Salon, "It's meant to primarily signal our most ardent supporters and the base of the Democratic Party that we are with you -- and that we need you -- to get this done and accomplish the other big things this president has set out to do."

The ad will reportedly run nationally on cable and in the D.C. area, though, at 60 seconds, it would be an expensive ad buy, and it's unclear how much money the party plans to invest in the spot.

The launch of the Obama-focused ad aimed at the party base coincides with the launch of "Call 'Em Out," a new site devoted to highlighting Republican leaders who stray from the truth on reform. (I'm assuming the name comes from a line in Obama's recent speech to a joint session of Congress: "If you misrepresent what's in this plan, we will call you out.")

The first person to be called out is Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty (R), for his "death panel" validation on MSNBC last week. Mike Allen said the site is "part of a larger, more aggressive approach taken by the White House through the DNC to push back against smears, distortions and misinformation."

Steve Benen 12:45 PM Permalink | Trackbacks | Comments (13)

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The DNC's Brad Woodhouse told Salon, "It's meant to primarily signal our most ardent supporters and the base of the Democratic Party that we are with you -- and that we need you

uh, would these be the same people that rahm and pals have worked so tirelessly to marginalize. funny, how when their newfound republican friends stab them in the back, they come slinking back to those who propelled obama to the national stage.

Posted by: linda on September 18, 2009 at 12:52 PM | PERMALINK

oh wowie zowie an official "call 'em out" website.

boy oh boy, that's just great.

hey, maybe you can get harry reid to post sternly-worded letters to all the repugs they call put... yeah. that's the ticket!

why do i remain so discouraged? with the dim party coming up with such hot ideas, i should be just fuckin' elated...

i guess i'm just not a happy person...

Posted by: neill on September 18, 2009 at 1:01 PM | PERMALINK

Knowing Mike Allen, I assume he then went on to say what a partisan unfair thing it was for the Dems to do this.

Posted by: howie on September 18, 2009 at 1:06 PM | PERMALINK

DNC: Does not compute

I disagree with the DNC's Brad Woodhouse.
It won't move the ardent left much at all.
He is out of touch if he thinks it will...

However it will be effectively at moving the great unwashed middle. And from that baseline primitive perspective: Thog likes it.

Your morning aphorism

When you do political math in America, the 30% who don't pay attention until the final minute of the fourth quarter, are often, the most important voices of all.

Posted by: koreyel on September 18, 2009 at 1:11 PM | PERMALINK

This is embarrassing.

The Republicans are working to stop health care. That's their goal, and they're working hard to achieve that goal. They get all fired up about death panels and socialism and undermining the Obama presidency and get to work.

The Democrats are working hard to ... what? End Republican lies? That's our goal? We're supposed to get fired up to work for health care reform with a public option, yay! Or not quite a public option! Maybe co-ops! Maybe a trigger, woot!

If the DNC wants to fire up the base, give us a specific goal we actually wanna achieve.

Posted by: gussie on September 18, 2009 at 1:21 PM | PERMALINK

The Left is ready...to fight for a public option. Anything less might be ok, but it isn't going to fire anyone up. I've seen Obama get more specific on support of a public option, and Pelosi too. The House should pass a bill with a good public option, Obama and the Left can then get behind it and bombard the Senate.

Posted by: Patrick on September 18, 2009 at 1:25 PM | PERMALINK

The cynics who spend their time complaining in blog comments would be better served and actually get something accomplished if they called or faxed their senators and congressmen and told them what they want in a bill.

Then you can go back to posing as one of the kewl kids.

Posted by: markg8 on September 18, 2009 at 1:41 PM | PERMALINK

markg8--I've emailed my congressman about the health care legislation. Unfortunately, my congressman is John Shimkus. His response indicated that HE has the answer to all the health care problems but that mean old Obama won't listen. Oh, and he didn't walk out on Obama's speech to make a statement. The speech was almost over and he didn't like it much.

So, can I go back to my posing now?

Posted by: Lifelong Dem on September 18, 2009 at 1:46 PM | PERMALINK

Seems to me this is pretty much an inside game among politicians who've for the most part already taken sides. Hope this is just a cynical Friday...

Posted by: beep52 on September 18, 2009 at 2:42 PM | PERMALINK

I'll bet the DNC version of the ad won't include the part where the audience booed at the mention of Baucus and his crappy "MaxTax" version of "reform."

Posted by: Mauimom on September 18, 2009 at 2:53 PM | PERMALINK

"... the launch of "Call 'Em Out," a new site devoted to highlighting Republican leaders who stray from the truth on reform."

Whe limit the targets of the new site 'Call 'Em Out' to Republican leaders?

Why not also call out / identify media representatives / personalities who also 'stray from the truth on reform'?

Posted by: Bill on September 18, 2009 at 3:10 PM | PERMALINK

Rally to the party? The democratic base rallied to the party the first Tuesday of last November. They already did their job. The ball is now in the court of Obama and the congressional democrats they saw fit to elect. To even imply otherwise is disingenuous.

The "leadership" of that party should get real, and get to work.

Posted by: JW on September 18, 2009 at 4:54 PM | PERMALINK

The "base" is already more than willing to support HCR. The DNC needs to go after the "independents" who make up the rest of the voter coalition that elected Obama and the other Democrats in November 2008.
For that reason the web site is a good start. Democratic politicians, however, also need to start "calling 'em out". When a Republican falsely says "HCR will _____" (fill in blank), an appropriate Democratic opposite (governor, senator, representative) needs to immediately issue a challenge, demanding where in the proposed legislation such activity is proposed.
It will garner headlines (doesn't the media like that sort of story?), it will force Republicans to argue the merits of HCR or look completely idiotic and, best of all, it doesn't cost the DNC any money!
I know, dreams, idle dreams...

Posted by: Doug on September 18, 2009 at 6:27 PM | PERMALINK
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