A Very Political Holiday

Who wouldn’t want Franni Franken’s recipe for butternut squash?

Politicians have long sent out holiday cards fraught with meaning or smacking of reelection desires.

But with technology getting better every year, the offerings have improved to be a bit zanier, and a lot more personal.

From the Franken family’s list of Thanksgiving favorites to posed photos, TPMDC collected a random sample of the funniest, wackiest and sweetest political holiday greetings we’ve seen so far and we’re sharing them with you below.

If you’ve seen some we’ve missed, let us know and we’ll post them this week.• Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin was abundant with cheer, if giving somewhat mixed messages.

Her email began with “Happy Holidays” in the subject line.

The header of the card is Season’s Greetings, and the body offers, “Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year.”

• In a bit of strange holiday sharing, Senate candidate Marco Rubio in Florida tweets a photo of his family’s Christmas eve pig.

“Warning picture not for the faint of heart,” he added.

• Rep. Kendrick Meek, attempting to win the Democratic nomination in the Florida governor’s Senate race, told his supporters his family “went green this year” with an online holiday card.

There’s the pet angle this staffer used to raise money for the DCCC.

• Rep. John Dingell and wife Debbie sent this card with their best Santa Claus pose.

• In Chris Dodd’s case, it’s a nearly illegible handwritten note and a cute family photo.

• Sen. Kit Bond pushed his political message against the administration’s spending plans in a video set to limerick.

• And don’t forget Sen. Roland Burris (D-IL), who used the same rhyme to go after Republicans on the Senate floor this week.

• Rep. Keith Ellison was in the spirit, joining health care carolers this week to the tune of “Jingle Bells.”

• Sen. Blanche Lincoln (D-AR), prominent in the health care debate, opens up about her family Christmas cards, sharing with supporters an album dating back to 2002.

“May you and your family enjoy this holiday season and forever treasure the relationships that you share,” she writes, in a card signed “Steve, Blanche, Reece and Bennett.”

• In their email to Franken supporters, Franni declares, “Thanksgiving at our house is all about the food.”

She shares the family’s favorite recipes, and hearkens back to the similar and successful 2007 campaign attempt.

“While some of you may have tried these in the past, our list of supporters has grown so much since then, we wanted to send them out again for everyone to enjoy,” she said.

Franni said she would change it up, but “Al has already informed me that changing the Thanksgiving menu is NOT change he can believe in.”


• The DSCC offers Democrats helpful tips for battling combative relatives “from the farthest right branches of your family tree” around the holiday table.

Their political email offers fictional quotes from Aunt Bertha, Uncle Frank and Cousin Larry about death panels, Medicare and global warming, and gives Democrats a “cribsheet” of policy talking points “that’s easy to refer to under the tablecloth or during a well-earned bathroom break.”

“Your Republican relatives will be rendered speechless,” the DSCC writes.

• And in the odd category, Rep. Joe Wilson of “You Lie!” fame used Christmas as an excuse to collect email addresses.

His wife Roxanne said she wanted to add supporters to the Wilson family Christmas card list and directed them to a Web site where they could fill in their contact information – including a phone number for text messages, presumably of the more than Happy New Year variety.

• The DNC used the 13 million-strong Organizing for America list to blast out a personalized video greeting starring staffers and supporters from all over the country.

The video (mine here) closes with President Obama signing a “personalized” card to the viewer thanks to some new technology.

A source told TPMDC the site with the personalized videos received 5 million visits in its first week. Supporters have sent more than 1 million videos to their friends.

• There also is Senate candidate Sue Lowden (R-NV):

• Rep. Dennis Kucinich (D-OH) and wife Elizabeth:

Special thanks to TPM intern Amber van Natten for helping gather these images.