August 7th, 2009
06:43 PM ET
5 years ago

Obama political arm goes on offense

Obama's political operation is responding to health care protesters.
Obama's political operation is responding to health care protesters.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – President Obama's political operation is signaling a new call to arms, and is urging supporters to push back against vocal opponents who have dominated the recent congressional town hall meetings on health care.

"The same angry groups and right wing extremists we saw at rallies during last year's election are at it again," Mitch Stewart, director of Organizing for America, says in a nearly two-minute long video that will be emailed Friday afternoon to Obama supporters.

"They are spreading lies about the president's plan and with the encouragement of Republican leaders, and funding from their special interest allies they are disrupting pubic events. They are trying to drown out public discourse and legitimate conversation on this issue in communities all across America."

The video shows Stewart sitting in an office and cuts to images of protesters disrupting town halls. Stewart goes on to instruct supporters to visit a Web site to "sign up for events in your community and contact your representatives."

At the conclusion of the 2008 election, Obama transitioned his presidential campaign into OFA, which is now a project of the Democratic National Committee.


Filed under: Health care • OFA • President Obama
soundoff (151 Responses)
  1. once upon a horse

    IT'S ABOUT TIME! One thing that has always bothered me about the Democrats is that they seem to let the Republicans push them around and just lie down and have them walk all over them. GOP has been playing dirty tricks for years. Hopefully the Obama adminstration won't cave in and be bullied. Let the American people decide who is right and who is worng..that is why we have elections.

    August 7, 2009 07:08 pm at 7:08 pm |
  2. S M R

    It's embarrassing to see fellow Americans acting like complete fools.

    August 7, 2009 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  3. Mrs. Smith

    The protesters/extremists/terrorizers at the town hall meetings are behaving SO uncivilized and child-like. They can't even have a civil conversation to articulate why they oppose health care reform. They seem so filled with hate that you'd think that they worshiped the devil. Yikes! Boy, the Republican party is truly desperate, but change is coming despite all their noise. Whoohoo! :)

    August 7, 2009 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  4. ib

    Obama is determined to destroy this country. He has not brought us together as he said he would he is instead doing everything he can to futher divide this country. If you don't agree with him on everything he wants he sends his attack dogs after you. Please wake up people and realize what is going on with Obama.

    August 7, 2009 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  5. Tobi

    Its about time to silence these american version of extremists...making yourself heard is different from imposing your extreme views on others who are usually in the majority.
    Its about time the people that really need this health care plan...sitted in their houses struggling- its about time they come out in force and silence the vocal minority who aims to deprive them of what they are entitled to only because they are not in government.

    From Coventry, U.K

    August 7, 2009 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  6. Omar Norwood

    NOW LISTEN UP! I am very concerned about the rhetoric against our President who just happened to be African-American. These people who are interupting townhall meetings are really closet-racists. This type of talk always brings about attempted assassination. The Republican Party is responsible for most of this type of talk. They scare people into believing that Obama will socialize healthcare. The President has repaetedly stated he would not. Why are older white people scared of Obama? Health care has been a huge issue since the eighties. When Republicans were at the helm, you didnt see Democrats interupting townhall meetings did you? If Obama is assassinated, you may very well see the end of this government and the country will fall into anarchy. I have noticed mostly older white Americans heckling the meetings. I hope and pray that young white folks talk to and help prevent older white folks from doing something that will no doubt throw this country into possible civil war or a race war. The rhetoric needs to stop and we African-American are watching closely. Let Obama do the job that the American people elected him to do.

    August 7, 2009 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  7. BS

    So you can't handle people speaking the truth via the First Amendment. Must be because the Republicans speak the truth, HUH?

    August 7, 2009 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  8. annie s

    I stand with the President for long overdue health insurance reform! I have seen the problems in our health care delivery and health insurance from all sides, including nearly 20 years as an administrator for a medical center and now as a self employed small business owner. Real reform with a robust public option can not be allowed to be shouted away by the selfish and self serving thugs who are spreading lies and fear.

    August 7, 2009 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  9. Keith in Austin

    Yeah right! Obama is going on offensive attacking every-day Americans with vile propaganda. The only thing offensive are the Democrats and their elitist desire for big government control of everything in our lives! Stand up America!!!

    August 7, 2009 07:29 pm at 7:29 pm |
  10. David

    It's amazing how much energy and money has been wasted dealing with the Republican Axes of Evil (GOP-Lobbyists-Hate Groups).

    Why is this allowed to continue? Shouldn't they be arrested in the town halls for disturbing the peace? Why not post a notice that states No Signs, and that hecklers will be warned, then removed by the police. PERIOD!

    Psychos are removed from other congressional meetings, why not these meetings?

    August 7, 2009 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
  11. Jane/Seattle

    Hit Back! This is exactly what is needed to diffuse the Right Wing Nut Movement.

    August 7, 2009 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  12. Shawn - GA

    What a bunch of scary people these guys are. If you don't agree then you are a bad person...

    There was plenty of protests during the Bush administration and that was that, no one claimed there was a big bad wolf behind it all....

    These guys are down right scary and I am becoming fearful of my goverment.

    August 7, 2009 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  13. democrat no mas

    This is more than people trying to get their guy into office. This is truly a grass roots movement. I feel that way myself, and I'm solo. Slow down or do nothing, I need time to breath. Please, water-boarder in chief, look what you're doing to us.

    August 7, 2009 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  14. unshrub

    It's about time. The republican ad I heard yesterday about the Democrats health plan was just one big lie. If the Democrats Health Care Bill is so bad why does the republicans have to lie about it?

    August 7, 2009 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  15. caminito

    The "conservative" extremist accusing Obama and other to be nazis or
    fascists?? They should look at themselves ina mirror. A typical behavior of the latter, End 20's and 30's, was to interrupt violently any
    gathering of not think-alikes!

    I would advise Mr. McCain and other rational thinking republicans to
    group themselves, offer in good faith to negotiate with the President and tell the leadership of the GOP that if they do not change their ways, they would form a new party.

    In the 1920's, an equivalent phenomena happened in the UK with thei 2-parties system. The centuries old Liberal Party lost its way and when the Labor Wing menaced to form its own party, they were laughed off. What happened??

    The Labor Party resurged from the Liberal ashes and today, 80
    years later, is once again governing the UK

    August 7, 2009 07:45 pm at 7:45 pm |
  16. Donna

    Keep up the fight Mr President and ignore these crazy right wing hate mongers stirred up by RUSH vicodin/viagra/facelift LIMBAUGH....
    The people of the U.S.A. are behind you, dont let these groups who are paid and or encouraged to act like morons succeed, the CRAZY RIGHT WING REPUBLICANS will do anything to get attention and its a shame ............. This like all their other tricks and games will backfire on them , the rooster will come home to roost, as my grandfather used to say, Karma will get them ......

    August 7, 2009 07:49 pm at 7:49 pm |
  17. Mike

    Ugh. Yes, I want health care reform, but I'm sick of the constant bickering and fighting over it. The least these political groups could do is focus on something BESIDES targeting the opposite party...

    August 7, 2009 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
  18. gloves are off!!!!

    It's about time!

    It is time to get nasty with these crazy, ignorant conservatives

    Medicare = Government run health care

    August 7, 2009 07:53 pm at 7:53 pm |
  19. caminito

    By the way: The Nazi activists which interrupter or attacked their oponents where an organization called "SA" (in German, STURMABTEILINGEN, translated STORM TROOPER GROUPS)

    August 7, 2009 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  20. Deep Throat

    Tell us, Mr. Obama, why do you think it necessary to unleash others
    to quash dissent from your policies? Did you ever stop to think that
    some of your critics may be ordinary Americans with genuine
    complaints? Wasn't your outburst about the Gates affair enough?
    Must you invite further trouble by egging on others to do the work
    your administration should be doing? A recent incident involving
    labor goons attacking a critic in St. Louis is shocking. Thankfully,
    arrests have been made and the culprits punished. This is no
    way to sell healthcare to the public. LBJ and Nixon went too far.
    Please learn from them.

    August 7, 2009 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  21. mk

    More than 9 million people in the U.S. have already signed on to a single-payer system that's proved both workable and popular: TRICARE, the Department of Defense's program for active-duty military and retirees. Even more interesting: According to a Facing South analysis, nearly half of TRICARE beneficiaries live in the South - states where Congressional leadership has been most vocal in opposing public involvement in health care. That combined with the 44.2 million people on Medicare seems to point to a pretty successful track record for Government Run Healthcare Programs. I don' t see any of those covered by Tricare or Medicare begging to be released from these dreaded GOVERNMENT RUN HEALTHCARE PROGRAM. 53 Million satisfied customers sure seems like a louder voice than those 15 or 20 who keep showing up at these town hall meetings trying so hard to make sure nobody gets heard

    August 7, 2009 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  22. YBM

    What I want to know is who is behind Obama. He came too far too fast. He should never have beaten Hillary. A freshman senator from illinois, spending 2 years of his 1 term as senator campaigning for president????? and wins!??? With Hillary's background and backing? Think about it. There is some food for thought for conspiracy theorists. He won the illinois senate by being a typical chicago thug.

    August 7, 2009 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  23. Mary

    These GOP people are acting like the scum of the earth. Can't they see, American people are not stupid and will no longer put up with this non-sense. the ony reason decent people haven't wiped them out, is because the President is such a class act, we don't want to bring them down. This too will back fire on Michael Steel, GOP representatives, and the low life's that follow their lead. They are acting worse that the third world countries. Get a ligr and get lost republicians!!

    August 7, 2009 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  24. Zion

    Here's the problem I have. I don't mind protest, as a matter of fact even with my Conservative values I have been known to protest. When the protesters continually embarrass themselves by behaving like animals, they need to be arrested. I wish that the media would show constructive meetings like those in Maryland where both sides learned from each other versus shouting each other down.

    August 7, 2009 08:03 pm at 8:03 pm |
  25. mike pizz

    the right continues to be wrong .be glad they didn't have there loyal NRA members shooting people ..

    August 7, 2009 08:05 pm at 8:05 pm |
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