GOP Maps Out Medicare Messaging Strategy Post NY-26

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There’s no denying that Medicare is still the central political issue of the moment, and Republicans are still trying to figure out if they can message their way out of the hole they’ve dug for themselves.

Here’s a glimpse into how that’s playing out behind the scenes. The day after the Republicans lost the special election in NY-26, a spokeswoman for Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-CO), Catherine Mortensen, sent the following internal email to some of her colleagues on the Hill.

Hello Respected Hill Communicator!

I am going to talk to my boss about a franked mail piece that will hit people’s mailboxes in our district in late July –

I am thinking of focusing on one of two issues:

1 – need to reform Medicare ( a defense of the Ryan plan )

2 – debt ceiling – why we must make structural changes to spending before we agree to pass a debt ceiling limit increase.

Do you have any thoughts on which one of these messages is better?

THANKS,

The email was passed my way by a source. Mortensen, did not respond to a request for comment, nor did the recipients.

This may be a penetrating glimpse into the obvious, but, as in this case and so many others in politics, if you’re explaining, you’re losing.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Brian Beutler is TPM's senior congressional reporter. Since 2009, he's led coverage of health care reform, Wall Street reform, taxes, the GOP budget, the government shutdown fight and the debt limit fight. He can be reached at brian@talkingpointsmemo.com
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