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
Add to Briefcase
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: Clinton “Doesn’t Have The Stamina” to be President
8 hours ago

At the end of the debate, moderator Lester Holt asked Donald Trump if he stands by his statement that Hillary Clinton didn't have the look of a president. Trump responded by saying Holt misquoted him, instead saying that Clinton "doesn't have the stamina." Clinton responded by saying that when Trump visits 112 countries as secretary of state, he can talk to her about stamina.

Trump: Clinton Camp Started Birtherism
8 hours ago

Donald Trump, when pressed by Lester Holt on why he finally admitted that President Obama was born in America, repeated his widely debunked claim that it was started by Hillary Clinton.

Conversation Shifts to Race
8 hours ago

Hillary Clinton went point by point on how race can so often determine the treatment that people receive, mentioning recent shootings in Tulsa and Charlotte, calling for restored trust between communities and police, and demanding criminal justice reform. Trump responded by calling for law and order and touting his endorsements from police unions. He then said that “African Americans are living in hell,” saying they are just walking down the street and getting “shot ... being decimated by crime."

During Debate, Trump Site Appears to Be Down
9 hours ago

Just as Hillary Clinton was inviting debate viewers to visit her site for real-time fact checking, there appeared to be a problem with Donald Trump's own campaign website. For about a 15-minute period, a blank page or an error message appeared when we tried to load the Trump site.

Trump Comes Out Swinging
9 hours ago

Donald Trump has come out in the first segment of this debate raring to go. Trump has interrupted nearly every answer being given by Hillary Clinton, talking over her time and again. Clinton is sticking to her guns, smiling while Trump speaks and then calling on people to go to her website and see the fact checking being done.