2006-02-01 Entry: "Democratic Response to the SoTU - There's A Better Way"
(yes, I'm borrowing this from my own posting at DailyKos, but I want to keep a record of it)
Wow. One of the dullest, most stilted, most uninspiring speeches ever given is the Democratic response to George W. Bush's weakest every State of the Union speech? What are the Democratic party thinking? Who's in charge? Who's organising their media strategy? Let me guess, the same old tired, consultants...
There's a better way...
Hire a hall - choose somewhere with good acoustics. Give the speaker a podium he can bang on. Make it look like a rebuttal, so he's got the same sort of setting as the President.
Pack it with partisans - Get the commenters from DailyKos. Get someone, anyone, who can cheer and clap when the speaker pauses for applause. Tim Kaine kept pausing tonight, and we needed shouting and hollering to support him during it.
Get a speaker with passion - Tim Kaine was stilted, passionless, and weak. He needed to believe what he was saying. He needed to be invested in what he was saying. He needed to beat up on the President.
Get decent writers - You know roughly what the President is going to say. Write an outline. Don't focus-group the hell out of it. Get the ThinkProgress guys in there, and a stand-up comedian in there, and fill out the rest of the speech WHILE the President is speaking. Make it a real response, not a vague, unfocused speech filled with platitudes.
Have an agenda - You know the President, at his weakest ever, is going to give a speech filled with platitudes. Have a real agenda. Have something - one or two policies that the American people can say "These people really have an agenda". Tonight's best idea would have been a constitutional amendment for privacy. Especially after the President's "we're making you safer by listening to your phone calls".
The Democratic response is a perfect opportunity for the party to bash the President while he's waffling. Tonight they failed. What's the point of having a War Room if they're not willing to go to war? Next year, there's a better way...