Foley: The Democratic Playbook

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Stephanie, Oct 4, 2006.

  1. Stephanie

    Stephanie Diamond Member

    Jul 11, 2004
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    It may not be as smooth as the Republicans' Stirling engine, but the Democrats' party committees are hitting on all cylinders today. They want candidates in each and every House and Senate race to push the Foley scandal to its hilt.

    (Sample DSCC release: “Foley Sex Scandal Hits DeWine.” Sample WI Dem party release: “Foley Scandal: What Did Green Know and When Did He Know it?”)

    Here's Dems' playbook:

    1. Pay no heed to the distinction between the e-mails and IMs. There's no evidence (yet) that any Republican leaders knew about Foley's cybersex IMs. There's plenty of evidence that they knew how uncomfortable the "overly friendly" e-mails made at least one page. So the Dems will press the GOP on what they knew about the former and will constantly, in their press releases, refer to the "GOP's knowledge of the sexually explicit e-mails."

    2. Enlarge the wedge between House leaders. The tension this weekend between Speaker Dennis Hastert and NRCC chair Tom Reynolds was thick. Dems want it to suffocate the party and throw the Republicans even further off their game.

    3. Be aggressive about how Dems will -- and are -- protecting children. Dems want to keep the issue poisonous in a way that's clear and direct to middle America. (In other words: this ain't earmarks.)

    4. Choose unimpeachable spokespeople to be their public face. The DCCC has enlisted Patty Wetterling, its candidate for MN 06, to call for "a thorough investigation" of the House leadership over Foley. Wetterling's son, Jacob, was kidnapped in 1989.

    5. Deride the Republicans for incompetence. How can you possibly trust them with national security if you can't trust them with your own children?

    6. Bring up Terri Schiavo's case and compare the heated GOP attention back then to their allegedly lax attention to the welfare of their pages.

    7. Compare what the GOP leadership says about Foley with what Republicans said about Jack Abramoff.

    8. Use the Foley cash. Already, the DSCC wonders why George Allen didn't immediately return the Foley. The quotable Phil Singer: “It is more than a little disturbing that Allen apparently sees nothing wrong with holding on to contributions he got from an adult who has been caught sending sexually explicit email to children." Allen and Rep. Heather Wilson (R-NM) will return the cash. But the NRCC already spent the $550K and won't.

    Here's what the Democrats hope to accomplish:

    1. Republicans will flinch before they try and use "values" as a cudgel. Can this NRCC ad against Brad Ellsworth be run in this environment?

    2. Democrats now have a new way to respond to the Republicans when they go negative: "They're just trying to distract you from the scandal."

    3. GOP candidates will be thrown on the defensive, generally.

    4. Link House candidates -- and not just Reynolds -- to the sense that that the GOP was hesitant to investigate or even poke around into Foley's life because they didn't want to jeopardize their majority. That is, they craved power to the point where they ignored or suppressed warnings.

    Posted at 04:00 PM

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