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Friday, March 25, 2005

Lautenberg’s Priorities – Who Done It?

Senator Frank Lautenberg is at it again:
In an effort to get to the bottom of how Republican lawmakers obtained talking points urging them to use the tragedy surrounding Ms. Terri Schiavo for political gain, United States Senator Frank R. Lautenberg (D-NJ) today asked the top Republican and Democrat on the Rules Committee to conduct an immediate investigation.

Media reports suggest the anonymous talking points (attached) were circulated on the floor of the Senate chamber.

"Those who would attempt to influence debate in the United States Senate should not hide behind anonymous pieces of paper," wrote Lautenberg in his letter (attached) to Senators Trent Lott (R-MS) and Christopher Dodd (D-CT). "In light of this troubling incident, I am writing to request that the Rules Committee conduct an investigation of the attached document, its source, and how it came to be distributed."
No politics involved here, just another example of Frank Lautenberg working hard for the people of New Jersey. We hope the Senate gets to the bottom of this crisis. We wonder what Lautenberg will say when the source proves to be a Democrat dirty trickster.

From Powerline:
Meanwhile, the memo's contents deserve a second look. It is alleged to be a "talking points" memo, and some of its entries are consistent with that description. But other entries--the very ones that reporters and Democrats are pointing to as significant--do not. A reader named Andrew makes the point very well:

I used to work on the Hill too, and have worked in journalism and public relations. That so-called GOP talking points memo obtained by ABC News is perhaps the most poorly worded TP memo ever written.

The whole purpose of a TP memo is to provide compelling arguments to officials to use when addressing the media and public. And these arguments are usually presented in descending order of effectiveness.

Are we to believe that two of the most compelling talking points in favor of the Schiavo legislation are that: a) "the pro-life base will be excited" and b) "this is a great political issue" and "a tough issue for Democrats"?

Are these the sorts of things that a Hill staffer would suggest a senator mention to reporters when questioned about this matter?

So, to sum up: The memo itself contains no clue as to its origins. That in itself is suspicious; the memo's contents are hardly appropriate for an anonymous communication. The fact that the memo appeared in Senators' offices (or, for that matter, at ABC News) proves nothing, as anyone, including a Democratic dirty trickster, could have distributed it.

Mike Allen of the Washington Post says he knows something he can't tell us, but his only argument for why the memo is authentic--some Senators had it--is silly. Further, the content of the memo is highly suspicious. Why would anyone mix political strategy points--the ones the Democrats want to talk about--with talking points for Senatorial argument? A competent staffer preparing a talking points memo wouldn't do that, but a Democratic dirty trickster would.
More here, here and here.

Update: Michelle Malkin posts on Lautenberg’s demands



2 Comments:

At 8:49 AM, Blogger Fausta said...

It's amazing that so much credibiity's been given to what obviously is an anonymous document.

 
At 2:05 AM, Blogger 贝贝 said...

The Tax Return Crack-Up<3>
Granted, there are usuallyMicrosoft Office 2010write-ups when presidential contenders make their tax returns available, but the coverage falls far short of the Office 2010
full court press (pardon the pun) that the Clintons have received. What's Microsoft Office 2007different now?Office 2007One possibility is that most upper middle class Democrats, and therefore most Microsoft OfficeOffice 2007 keyeditors and reporters of our nation's big papers as well as Office 2007 downloadtelevision producers, are Obama supporters who think that Hillary should hurry up Office 2007 Professionaland drop out of the race already.Microsoft outlook
Microsoft outlook 2010Whom elite liberals are pulling for really does shape political coverage in ways

 

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