Obamacare Is the GOP’s Thanksgiving Turkey

House GOP leaders armed their members with a new playbook on how to highlight Obamacare problems while outside Washington.

President Barack Obama (2nd L) pardons the 2012 National Thanksgiving Turkey Cobbler as daughters Sasha Obama (3rd L) and Malia Obama (R), and National Turkey Federation Chairman Steve Willardsen (L) look on during a Rose Garden event November 21, 2012 at the White House.
National Journal
Billy House
Nov. 21, 2013, 11:01 a.m.

As law­makers head home to their dis­tricts for Thanks­giv­ing re­cess, Re­pub­lic­ans will be serving up a bliz­zard of mes­saging de­signed to high­light the prob­lems with Obama­care. They even have a play­book on how to do it.

House GOP lead­ers armed their rank-and-file mem­bers Thursday with a new mes­saging book on how to ham­mer home the health care law’s prob­lems while out­side Wash­ing­ton.

The cov­er of the new play­book bears the title “#Keep­TheP­rom­ise” and the next page ex­plains that it lays out “mes­saging tools to help you com­mu­nic­ate in your dis­trict about the on­go­ing harm Obama­care is caus­ing.”

In­side, the play­book provides mem­bers with vari­ous so­cial me­dia and event strategies, di­git­al fly­ers, canned tweets and fact sheets.

One part of the play­book says House Re­pub­lic­an con­fer­ence lead­ers have pro­duced a “series of fly­ers com­par­ing lost in­sur­ance per state to se­lec­ted plans in the Obama­care ex­changes.”

“Down­load your state fly­er here to share on so­cial me­dia us­ing the hash tag #KeepY­ourHealth­Plan,” the book tells law­makers.

There is also a sec­tion in the play­book on the Obama­care rol­lout num­bers re­leased on Nov. 13. “The num­bers were well be­low ex­pect­a­tions and show no signs of im­prov­ing.”

The play­book is not en­tirely neg­at­ive in fo­cus, however. It con­cludes with post­card-like pho­tos of a spread of food at a Thanks­giv­ing table, and an­oth­er photo of a wag­on filled with pump­kins on a bu­col­ic lakeside. The cap­tion on both takes from a quote that is at­trib­uted to Ab­ra­ham Lin­coln: “The year that is draw­ing to­ward its close has been filled with the bless­ings of fruit­ful fields and health­ful skies.”

What We're Following See More »
Trump Not on Ballot in Minnesota
2 days ago
Trump on Immigration: ‘I Don’t Know, You Tell Me’
2 days ago

Perhaps Donald Trump can take a plebiscite to solve this whole messy immigration thing. At a Fox News town hall with Sean Hannity last night, Trump essentially admitted he's "stumped," turning to the audience and asking: “Can we go through a process or do you think they have to get out? Tell me, I mean, I don’t know, you tell me.”

Trump Enriching His Businesses with Donor Money
3 days ago

Donald Trump "nearly quintupled the monthly rent his presidential campaign pays for its headquarters at Trump Tower to $169,758 in July, when he was raising funds from donors, compared with March, when he was self-funding his campaign." A campaign spokesman "said the increased office space was needed to accommodate an anticipated increase in employees," but the campaign's paid staff has actually dipped by about 25 since March. The campaign has also paid his golf courses and restaurants about $260,000 since mid-May.

Trump Cancels Rallies
4 days ago

Donald Trump probably isn't taking seriously John Oliver's suggestion that he quit the race. But he has canceled or rescheduled rallies amid questions over his stance on immigration. Trump rescheduled a speech on the topic that he was set to give later this week. Plus, he's also nixed planned rallies in Oregon and Las Vegas this month.

Sean Hannity Is Also Advising Trump
5 days ago

Donald Trump's Fox News brain trust keeps growing. After it was revealed that former Fox chief Roger Ailes is informally advising Trump on debate preparation, host Sean Hannity admitted over the weekend that he's also advising Trump on "strategy and messaging." He told the New York Times: “I’m not hiding the fact that I want Donald Trump to be the next president of the United States. I never claimed to be a journalist.”