Monday, February 2, 2009

Frame, Baby, Frame

Michael "drill, baby, drill" Steele, the new chairman of the GOP, plans to re-frame his party's fixation on "culture war" issues, especially gay marriage and abortion:

STEELE: Well, you know, see — now, Chris, you've just defined — you've just defined the world in which there are issues. You've just narrowed — you've just narrowed my scope to two issues.

WALLACE: No, I'm just saying on those issues, is there 80 percent agreement?

STEELE: Well, if there — if that's the 20 percent they disagree with us on, let's work on the 80 percent where they agree with us. That's my point.

I'm not going to allow anyone to define the issues for us and say, "Well, these are the only two issues that really matter." There's a whole range of issues out there in which we can address the American people and the American people can come to our table.
This approach holds great promise for swaying voters fresh from their fall off the turnip truck, not to mention those twelve or thirteen voters who follow politics but don't care about issues like abortion and gay rights.

It's odd. Suddenly, Republicans should distract voters from social issues by refocusing on economics, when the GOP playbook since at least the 1960's has been to distract voters from economics by focusing on social issues.

My confidence in framing grows ever stronger.

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