REVEALED: The Secret GOP Playbook For Killing Financial Reform

frank luntz

You might recognise this face from cable news.

He’s Frank Luntz, the conservative strategist whose specialty is using focus groups to test effective political language.

He comes up with the phrases you hear politicians repeat over and over and over again.

And now he’s helping businesses and politicians who are opposed to financial reform — in particular, the Consumer Financial Protection Agency.

The HuffingtonPost’s Sam Stein has posted one of Luntz’s strategy memos.

Basically, it’s the result of a poll Luntz conducted about reform, and inside he reveals the key themes opponents of financial reform need to hit on in order to be successful.

In a nutshell: Americans hate bailouts, regulators, bureaucrats, loopholes, deadbeat homeowners, and lobbyists. And as long as you can attach those words to reform, you can kill it.

Now see how it’s done >

First, realise that a plurality of Americans blame deadbeat homeowners for the crisis, NOT Wall Street

Source: Frank Luntz: 'The Language Of Financial Reform' via HuffingtonPost

And as long as its the CEOs who are punished, then Americans are OK with letting the companies survive.

Source: Frank Luntz: 'The Language Of Financial Reform' via HuffingtonPost

Besides, a year after the government first started acting on the economy, few are satisfied with the results

Source: Frank Luntz: 'The Language Of Financial Reform' via HuffingtonPost

And NOBODY likes regulators

Source: Frank Luntz: 'The Language Of Financial Reform' via HuffingtonPost

Again, people have no confidence in regulators. None.

Source: Frank Luntz: 'The Language Of Financial Reform' via HuffingtonPost

If regulation is couched as a bailout, it makes it even more objectionable.

Source: Frank Luntz: 'The Language Of Financial Reform' via HuffingtonPost

Amazing. If you convince the public that the regulation is a bailout, they'll punish any Congressman who supports it.

Source: Frank Luntz: 'The Language Of Financial Reform' via HuffingtonPost

Another key angle: Make it sound as though any regulation is the product of lobbyists. The public HATES lobbyists.

Source: Frank Luntz: 'The Language Of Financial Reform' via HuffingtonPost

Source: Frank Luntz: 'The Language Of Financial Reform' via HuffingtonPost

This is the kind of imagery that works well in opposing reform.

Source: Frank Luntz: 'The Language Of Financial Reform' via HuffingtonPost

Source: Frank Luntz: 'The Language Of Financial Reform' via HuffingtonPost

Bottom line: Here are the words to use over and over again when you appear on Fox News and MSNBC

Source: Frank Luntz: 'The Language Of Financial Reform' via HuffingtonPost

And if you actually want to put those words into phrases

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