How to Take Back Congress: Advice for the Democrats

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Stress the GOP's lack of competence. And stress what we intend to do. Retaliation is not what the voters want to hear -- no impeachment talk. They want to see that we can be competent in solving their problems.

-- Tony Coelho, chairman of Al Gore's 2000 presidential campaign

Spend less time opposing and more time proposing how we can fix the mess that the GOP leadership in Washington has put us in. Democratic governors are succeeding in some of the reddest states in the country. The national party needs to adopt their mainstream message.

-- Bill Richardson, governor of New Mexico

Inspire the base, motivate it, give it a reason to get out and work hard for our candidates, because the Republicans are sure as heck going to give their supporters plenty of reasons to turn out.

-- Markos Moulitsas, Daily Kos blog founder

Go for the jugular as the Republicans always do with Democrats. Just keep saying, "The Republicans lost the war in Iraq." Scare the hell out of people about all the ways we are unsafe: from global warming to terrorists so easily being able to penetrate ports or nuclear and chemical plants.

-- Bill Maher of HBO's "Real Time With Bill Maher"

The war in Iraq is over except for the dying. Campaign for a date to bring our forces home. Speak for Americans on big issues like gas prices, health care, the environment and alternative energy. Don't be afraid to say we're for the people, not the powerful. Be Democrats -- for a change.

-- Robert Shrum, senior adviser to John Kerry's 2004 presidential campaign

Swear off the focus on strategy and tactics. Tell voters that if they want more of the same, vote Republican. If they want change, vote Democrat. Say what you think and let the chips fall where they may.

-- Joshua Micah Marshall, publisher and editor of Talking Points Memo

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