Friday, May 22, 2009

Republican Healthcare Bingo

Anne Schroeder Mullins writes a snarky column for Politico (a snarky, inside the beltway publication) called “Shenanigans.” Recently, she devised a new game called “Frank Luntz Bingo.”

Frank Luntz is the former protégé of Haley Barbour, former chair of the RNC, former lobbyist for Mexico, current governor of Mississippi and recent visitor to Iowa. Why is he visiting Iowa, you ask? Because, Barbour is looking at the field of deeply unimpressive GOP’ers looking to challenge Obama and is thinking to himself, maybe no one will notice my dainty, two-tone loafers and will focus on my gravelly and vaguely fake sounding, but still folksy Southern accent and my good ‘ol boy charm. But I digress.

Luntz is a master of message development and poll testing and is well respected for his ability to wring useful information out of focus groups. Focus groups are tricky, because they are too small to be statistically relevant, so their use is more art than science – and Luntz is a fine artist in that respect (he is not a fine artists in the sense that his book, Words That Work, is poorly written and kind of condescending).

After being booted out of the establishment by the GOP leadership in 2005, Luntz is making a comeback and has come up with secret plan for victory on healthcare. By secret plan, I mean it was leaked within twelve hours and by victory, I mean, keep the status quo (which means that I would still need drive 20 miles to find a doctor in my network, in the event of swine flu – and if that happens, I am driving to Luntz’ house to I can cough on him).

But where were we? Oh yes – bingo. Enjoy.


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