CNN obtains GOP playbook to target Obamacare
November 21st, 2013
09:35 AM ET
9 months ago

CNN obtains GOP playbook to target Obamacare

Washington (CNN) - It's a playbook on the bruising field of health care politics, complete with "x's and o's."

The House Republican strategy memo, entitled "Because of Obamacare... I lost my insurance," offers samples of talking points, social media, videos, digital flyers, op-eds, and a fact sheet for GOP lawmakers doing battle against the president's signature legislative achievement.

Read the playbook (PDF)

Obtained by CNN, and reported first by Roll Call, the playbook was released late last month. A Republican source who provided the strategy memo to CNN says it will be updated and released to GOP House members Thursday.

"The administration now has a serious competence problem. Healthcare.gov is so much more than a website. The website should have been the easy part," the playbook reads.

The disclosure of the memo, produced by the office of House Republican Conference Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers, comes amid a sustained Republican onslaught against the Affordable Care Act.

President Obama has noted the highly organized opposition to his signature legislative achievement.

“One of the problems we’ve had is one side of Capitol Hill is invested in failure,” Obama said at a Wall Street Journal event with some of the nation's top CEO's Tuesday.

White House spokesman Eric Schultz said the GOP's "18 page playbook of partisan attacks is 18 pages longer than their health care plan."

"In the playbook, there’s not a single word devoted to helping constituents enroll or offering an alternative idea to help Americans gain access to quality, affordable care," he added.

A spokesperson for House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said Democrats will continue to back the program.

"While Republicans continue to fixate on sabotaging health reform and root for failure, House Democrats will continue to stand tall in support of the Affordable Care Act, work to strengthen the health reform law as implementation continues, and ensure that millions of uninsured Americans get coverage," Drew Hammill said in a statement.


Filed under: Congress • Obamacare
soundoff (386 Responses)
  1. dave

    Go GOP, the party of G W Bush and Richard M. Nixon

    November 21, 2013 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  2. llmoss

    Is this anything like the Democrat play book that got the bill passed in the first place? You know, the lock the door and don't let anyone in or "Deem it to pass" or the pass it to find out what's in it play book? Well, Nancy and her crew can stand tall all they want. But, my guess is they will be doing a lot of ducking as well.

    November 21, 2013 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  3. Dancccc

    One side of the hill is invested in failure.

    Which side are you talking about Mr. President

    November 21, 2013 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  4. Mark

    Eric, republican plan: if you like your money you can keep your money. Period.

    November 21, 2013 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  5. Anonymous

    What a pack of truths.

    November 21, 2013 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  6. Sue

    The epitome of what is wrong with government today. Self satisfying agendas, with absolute no interest in the welfare of US citizens.
    This is a disgusting display of ignorance and egocentric behavior. What a fine example for our children and the rest of the world. What an embarrassment.
    I long for the day when we have government leaders who will do just that. Lead our country with compassion, intelligence, and self sacrifice.
    I can't even imagine where we would be if our founding fathers were so reckless with their governance.

    November 21, 2013 10:41 am at 10:41 am |
  7. VEW2012

    Which only goes to prove the GOP doesn't care about average American citizens, and only cares for those who have a few million to donate to their lack of compassion health care plan for the American people. As for "death panels" the GOP has cornered the market on that policy.

    The GOP seems to have forgotten (or wants to deny) that the Part D Medicare website had massive problems when it opened for enrollment. That they really didn't try to help the American people but only help the insurers and Big Pharma by not allowing the price for prescription drugs to be negotiated.

    November 21, 2013 10:42 am at 10:42 am |
  8. parshman

    President Obama claims he did not know what the NSA was doing, he didn't know people would have their policies cancelled, he didn't know the website was not ready. So, there are three options: He is incompetent, ignorant, or so arrogant, he won't admit his mistakes. Most likely all three.

    November 21, 2013 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  9. Bwana Salama

    I don't read anything in that "playbook" that is not true, do you? So, maybe we should all get the playbook and be a bit more informed. After all, the likes of CNN, NBC, and such are never talking about how bad the LAW is, just the website, and after a little while, they simply stop reporting the bad news about it. YOU ARE supposed to report ALL the news, not just that which suits your interests.... Are you trying to be impartial or not?

    November 21, 2013 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  10. Cheri Vislay

    How can you blame Republicans for not supporting this law? President Obama and the Democrats rammed this law through without any Republican buy in or support. Now that it's failing, how can you blame the Republicans for not supporting it?

    November 21, 2013 10:43 am at 10:43 am |
  11. Peter

    BOTH parties issue playbooks like this.

    The sad thing is that many people (you can read them on this board and other boards) just repeat these taking points verbatim with no thought whatsoever whether they are accurate or believable.

    BOTH parties count on people like this to carry their water.

    November 21, 2013 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  12. TheCapt

    Really CNN? We've seen the plays. It's kind of like a football team getting the other team's playbook with 30 seconds on the clock and losing by 3 touchdowns. How about a DNC playbook? Or does that go against your principles?

    November 21, 2013 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  13. my10cents

    No surprises here. The GOP haven't been about real solutions for the last 14 years.

    November 21, 2013 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  14. Sniffit

    "The website should have been the easy part," "

    Right, because in their cartoon coloring-book version of reality, interfacing with 36 states' insurance companies, recalcitrant GOP/Teatroll-led state governments, recalcitrant GOP/Teatroll-packed state insurance regulatory agencies, and their deliberate altering of their state insurance laws and regulatory schema specifically to cause implementation of the ACA problems...that's a piece of cake. Calling this "the easy part" when they inarguably recognized how difficult it would be and that the website's functionality would be a major opportunity for attack, strategized ways to make it more difficult and to sabotage it and then enacted those strategies (starting with refusing to set up their own state exchanges in the first place)...it's total BS.

    November 21, 2013 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  15. Wes Stepp Jr

    seems like 'pushing it in to pull it off' was never even close to being likely to work.

    November 21, 2013 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  16. Sniffit

    "Why would Republican lawmakers want to help a law they think is detrimental to our country?"

    Why would Republican lawmakers want to help a law they think is detrimental to their political capital?

    FIFY

    November 21, 2013 10:46 am at 10:46 am |
  17. 2purple79

    What's the point? Obama and the Dems lied and Insurance Died? The Dems are worried because the Repubs told the truth.

    November 21, 2013 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  18. John

    And this is news?
    CNN is patting itself on the back for this great scoop?
    Just trash the frickin' GOP playbook and look for yourselves CNN. Obamacare is a disaster.

    November 21, 2013 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  19. Bella may

    Where are the solutions.?

    November 21, 2013 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  20. Sniffit

    "Where is there plan ?"

    Meet their new plan, same as their old plan: "Screw you, I've got mine...now die and get out of my way."

    November 21, 2013 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  21. 2purple79

    You know CNN, if you only reported the truth perhaps people would stop commenting on how the Repubs did not have a plan. The repubs had a plan and CNN failed to report it!

    November 21, 2013 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  22. JohnRJohnson

    This "Playbook" has been brought to you by Koch.

    November 21, 2013 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  23. Sniffit

    "GOP's 35 page playbook of partisan attacks on ACA is 35 pages longer than their health care plan."

    "You didn't build that" should change to "You didn't build ANYTHING!"

    Oooooh, I like these, keep 'em coming +1

    November 21, 2013 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  24. Michael Lindsay

    well like we did not know this now that it's out how many of you agree they have nothing to offer just like the PRESIDENT has said all a along never will have nothing and do you now see they don't care about you and never have say what you will about the PRESIDENT he do care and is trying for all of us to have a fair chance and with this some will still not believe that the republicans are just plain liars and cheaters with no souls "those in congress" anyway this country will never ever be great again as long as there is a ( tea party republican party that hates and are racist and allow unlimited amounts of money to be involved in election and we now see it's sting) "FOR THE LOVE OF MONEY IS THE ROOT OF ALL EVIL"

    November 21, 2013 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  25. Gabe

    Democrats steam-rolled the Republicans legislating this bill with ZERO bipartison support; and now they are whining that Republicans don't want it to succeed?! Of course they don't! They didn't want it to begin with, why would they want it now?

    That is why you compromise and get bipartison support. Otherwise the other half of the boat is not rowing with you. They knowingly passed it without the other half supporting, and now they want someone to blame other than themselves.

    November 21, 2013 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
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