You’d think that, to become the Communications Director of the White House, you’d have to be pretty good at communication. But based on Dan Pfeiffer’s performance at Netroots Nation, the president must have filled the post using some other criteria.
Here’s Dan, explaining the hector the base strategy the White House employed so successfully leading up to the 2010 midterms.
“When Glenn Beck and John Boehner and Mitt Romney attack us, we expect that,” he said. “And sometimes when our friends attack us, we get frustrated. It doesn’t mean it’s the right thing to do to get frustrated.”
Glenn Beck makes millions comparing Obama to history’s worst mass murderers, while the liberal base of the Democratic Party has been known to remind him of his campaign promises. Easy to see why Pfeiffer would lump those “attacks” together.
Moreover, the White House didn’t just “get frustrated” with what it sneeringly dismissed as the “professional left.” These weren’t just a offhand remarks. What they did, in fact, was engage in a very systematic campaign to antagonize us. It was political malpractice at its worst, and it failed miserably. And because it failed miserably, what Pfeiffer should’ve said was, “It was stupid, and we were wrong to do it.” Full stop. Rather than, you know, compare us to Glenn Beck.
Then there was this little piece of historical revisionism, about Obama’s 1996 support of gay marriage:
“If you actually go back and look, that questionnaire was actually filled out by someone else, not the President. There was a long debate about this in the campaign. … This was litigated in the campaign,”
This statement was such bullshit, the White House had to scramble around and cough up a non-denial denial immediately after. Nicely done, Dan!
Lastly, there was this.
Pfeiffer said the White House would serve as a check against Republican efforts to undercut Medicare, privatize Social Security and repeal the health care overhaul. Obama, he said, would work to bring wireless technology to rural areas, develop alternative energy sources and offer tax incentives for small business.
That’s the big pitch this guy brought to enlist the support of liberals for Obama’s 2012 campaign? Really? “We don’t suck as much as Sarah Palin, and, also, too — tax cuts!” Fucking brilliant.
Pfeiffer, who got his start working for Evan Bayh, is clearly more than few sandwiches short of a picnic. He should be gone after this debacle.