Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Pro-Life Candidates Need Professional Message Training

This blog usually focuses more on news and reporting, but with the election results, we have seen a huge problem that needs to be addressed urgently. There has been much misguided commentary in recent days regarding the election and abortion. On the one hand, some well known GOP Senate candidates were verbally gang-raped by the pro-abortion "mainstream media" which never, ever asks pro-abortion politicians a challenging follow-up question on their extremist, no-exceptions pro-abortion positions. On the other hand, Mitt Romney and a whole host of down-ticket Republican candidates completely failed to use their Democrat opponents' extreme positions on abortion to their own electoral advantage.

Both these situations make one thing clear: Republican politicians are not receiving any helpful professional advice from their consultants and advisers on how to message their pro-life position. It's an after-thought at best. Remember, candidates for office are usually not running alone. They have staff. They have a team. Especially at the highest levels, they have professional consultants who do this cycle after cycle for candidates. You can tell, however, that when these candidates deal with the question of abortion, they are going it alone. Their answers are unsophisticated. It's nice that politicians are coming up with their own words, and speaking from the heart, but in this day when the pro-abortion media are like starving lions on the prowl for meat, on this subject wording is everything.

The biggest, problem, however is not in their poor answers when interrogated on stock ambush questions like: "What about rape and incest?" No, the biggest problem by far is that they are assuming from the outset a defensive posture. They are acting from the get-go that their pro-life position is something to be defended, something to be almost ashamed of. The reality is exactly the opposite: their pro-abortion opponent's position is the one that is shameful, the one that is shocking, the one that demands probing skeptical questioning. Usually the pro-abortion Democrat opposes protections for the unborn right up to birth, supports the radical, extremist, and highly controversial Planned Parenthood, supports tax funding of abortion, supports sex-selection abortion, abortion for minors without parental involvement, etc. These positions are shocking and disgraceful.

The starting assumption should be that the candidate with the pro-life position is the one who should be holding his head up high, shoulders back, and eager to talk about it in detail. The candidates like Maria Cantwell, Jay Inslee, or Susan DelBene who are stooges for the multi-million dollar abortion industry, devoid of conscience or decency, are the ones who should be crawling up to the debate podium in shame.

The "advice" now from the leftist hoards and their conservative useful idiots is that the GOP should have talked less about abortion. These geniuses seem to have forgotten about the elections of 2004 ("Values Voters" anyone) and even 2010. Republicans barely mentioned the abortion holocaust this year.

The fake news stories about the "rape" comments were not initiatives by Republicans. Much like the Benghazi scandal, which the Democrats pretended was a spontaneous eruption, but was in fact a meticulously pre-planned attack by diabolical conspirators bent on death and destruction, so indeed the "controversies" were the result of a deliberate line of questioning devised by the media intended to create a quote that can be used in a hit piece of "journalism" designed to damage Republicans and bully pro-lifers into silence.

No, what pro-life politicians must do is go on offence on abortion. This makes sense tactically and morally. Rule 1: you never play defense when you're right. Ever. Everyone knows the best defense is a good offense. Anyone who has played chess knows one thing: your opponent is out to get you. There's no neutrality. He's going to attack you, it's just a question of when. You can engage him on your terms, or on his. If candidates wait for the other side to bring up abortion, they're going to do it on the terms they find most favorable, which lets them take their extremist, evil, murderous position or agenda and hide it, instead making them seem most moderate to the voters. They know that the one part of the pro-life position that has the least support out of the gate is "exceptions". So that's what they want to talk about.

The last time Republicans went on offence on abortion was in the mid-90s when Ralph Reed and the Christian Coalition put the ban on partial-birth abortion on the political agenda with the Contract with the American Family. Democrats hated talking about abortion back then, because it put in the voters minds their support for something horrendous and grisly. It wasn't that swing voters necessarily supported a ban on abortion in the case of rape and incest; we changed the subject to a horrendous reality that they were forced to defend or side with us on, and that almost zero voters supported.

Most swing voters are somewhere in the middle of the spectrum on abortion regulation. When these voters see someone who seems defensive, even if they agree with them on the facts, they respond to that appearance and conclude they have something to hide. If they see someone proud of their position, they respond sympathetically, assuming that if they're proud of what they're saying, they've got nothing to hide. It's a powerful 'trick', but people key off your shame and/or pride cues.

Also, those confused voters who decide elections can end up sympathizing with either a hard-core pro-life candidate or a hard-core pro-abortion candidate. They have about a 75% overlap with each one. Swing voters are notoriously able to hold conflicting ideas on the same issue at the same time. If they are made to focus on the rape/incest question, which makes them queasy, they come away thinking they agree with the pro-abort. If they are made to focus on third trimester abortion, or sex-selection abortion, or partial-birth abortion, which the Democrat typically supports, they're going to come away thinking they agree with the pro-lifer. There's no rational consideration of the issues here, it's all a result of which candidate's "75% overlap" they went away thinking about.

It's absolutely criminal that Democrats in this country like Maria Cantwell, Patty Murray, Jay Inslee, let alone Barack Obama, can support abortion on demand up to the moment of birth, which no protections or regulations, fully paid for by taxpayers against their will, are willing to bring down the government in order to protect government subsidies to Planned Parenthood, which has been documented to do forced abortions, ignore statutory rape, sex trafficking, and engaging in massive Medicaid, fraud, and these politicians can run for re-election without their GOP challengers even bringing up this radical, extremist record once! If a would-be politician can't figure out how to use that record for their political advantage, they are abjectly incompetent.

To close the loop, candidates rely on professional consultants and media trainers. These are the people who are failing us. They are incompetent. Their strategy has failed. What we need is consultants to train pro-life candidates not just on how to message their pro-life positions, but how to go after and destroy the pro-abortion Democrats for their radical records, and how to proudly go on offence for life and make Democrats wish the topic would go away.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Amen. It is about time somebody said what a lot of us have been thinking and hoping for.