3.04.2010

RNC Document Mock Donors, Plays on "Fears" of Obama & "Socialism" (UPDATED)

Oops:

The Republican National Committee plans to raise money this election cycle through an aggressive campaign capitalizing on “fear” of President Barack Obama and a promise to "save the country from trending toward socialism."

The strategy was detailed in a confidential party fundraising presentation, obtained by POLITICO, which also outlines how “ego-driven” wealthy donors can be tapped with offers of access and “tchochkes.”

The presentation was delivered by RNC Finance Director Rob Bickhart to top donors and fundraisers at a party retreat in Boca Grande, Florida on February 18, a source at the gathering said.

In neat PowerPoint pages, it lifts the curtain on the often-cynical terms of political marketing, displaying an air of disdain for the party’s donors that is usually confined to the barroom conversations of political operatives.



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Believe it or not, that piece was from Politico! I know!

Statement from DNC Communications Director Brad Woodhouse on RNC Fund Raising Document (via AmericaBlog):
If you had any doubt, any doubt whatsoever, that the Republican Party has been taken over by the fear-mongering lunatic fringe, those doubts were erased today. The Republican Party, which barely 20 percent of Americans will even admit they belong to anymore, seems hell bent on damaging their battered brand even further by engaging in the most despicable kind of imagery, tactics and rhetoric imaginable. This type of politics at all cost approach to our public discourse is what the American people are sick and tired of – and if anyone thinks this wasn’t approved of or signed off on at the highest levels they are kidding themselves. Republicans across the country have cheered on crowds where these very images appeared, they’ve encouraged and perpetuated scandalous lies about the President and his plans. And, from calling for secession to condoning violence against government officials they have sunk to new and unbelievable lows.

It’s no wonder the RNC reacted with alarm when they learned the American people would see this presentation. This revealing document proves what the Republican party has long denied. But now, by their own admission, the express strategy of the Republican party is not to offer new ideas, but ‘fear.’ Republicans can no longer deny that they are peddling fear when they are literally selling it as their path back to power. It is a sad commentary on the state of the Republican Party that, devoid of ideas and solutions to our nation’s problems, problems created on their watch, that they would resort to these type of tactics. It’s sad. But true.

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UPDATE I:

Via Think Progress:
Steele defends RNC ‘fear’ docs depicting Obama as The Joker: ‘It was stuff that was pulled off the web.’

UPDATE II:

CNN Covered it today (via the DNC):
Are Republicans Appealing to Fear? They Say Yes, Explicitly

UPDATE III:

Lawrence O'Donnell, covering for Keith Olbermann on tonight's Countdown, reported on the scandal, and RNC Chairman Michael Steele's excuses:
Steele spins fundraising story

March 4: Chairman Michael Steele attempted to explain the RNC’s fundraising manifesto, which was obtained by Politico. The manifesto depicts President Obama, Speaker Pelosi, and Majority Leader as cartoon characters, and urges the use of scare tactics. Msnbc’s political analyst Richard Wolffe discusses.


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