As members of Congress head home for an August recess, Barack Obama's former campaign arm, Organizing for America (OFA), is gearing up to target Blue Dog districts with old-fashioned, election-style, on-the-ground operations.
OFA has been organizing canvasses and phone banks since early spring, but their strategy has changed dramatically during the last couple of weeks, becoming more pointed: they are organizing canvassing drives and phone banks that specifically target the districts of the Blue Dog Democrats who have been reluctant to support Obama's health care reform. Volunteers are organizing and manning phone banks to call Blue Dogs in other districts or states, and some volunteers are even driving into Blue Dog districts to lend a hand.
Last week, invitations went out to supporters in districts where support for or against Obama's health care reform is already certain. "We're changing the focus of our phone bank this weekend," one email and Facebook message from Nevada said. "We'll be calling the constituents of California Blue Dog Dems in both the House and Senate."
OFA volunteers are not calling to complain about the Blue Dogs, though. They're asking constituents to pick up the phone and call the Blue Dogs that represent them and tell them they support Obama's health care reform initiative. They're targeting constituents of Blue Dogs who have supported Obama in the past or indicated that they support health care reform, and they are asking them to mobilize. LinkHereMoveOn Threatens Blue Dogs: Block Reform And We'll Come After You
MoveOn has produced a hard-hitting ad that will be unleashed in the districts of any Blue Dog Dems who vote against the House Dems’ health care bill in committee today — a warning shot that’s intended to preview the broader ad campaign that will target Blue Dogs who continue to block reform throughout August, I’m told.
The ad is pretty tough stuff, and the script, which I’ve obtained, offers a glimpse of the type of spots that will strafe Blue Dogs and “centrist” Senate Dems from the left throughout the health care wars of summer.
This first ad will target any Blue Dogs who vote against the bill during today’s House Energy and Commerce vote, but it’s mainly intended to signal that the well-funded liberal groups are preparing to play very rough with Dems — directly naming them and accusing them of letting down their constituents.
The ad opens by naming a particular constituent in the target’s state who has lost his or her medical coverage. It names the individual member of Congress, and accuses him or her of siding “with the special interests and insurance companies” rather than helping “families get more affordable, quality health care choices.”
The spot then instructs listeners to call their member of Congress and ask them why they oppose real reform. “Families can’t afford to wait for real health care reform any longer,” it concludes.
The ad’s emphasis is another sign that the White House and its well-funded outside allies are doubling down on a stark, tightened-up message that will directly target the insurance companies, and will hammer Blue Dog and “centrist” Dems for placing the interests of the insurance industry over those of ordinary Americans.Read the full script here
, and get ready to hear lots more like it.