Republican reps go home with PR mission on minds

WASHINGTON, DC: Republican members of the U.S. House of Representatives will be back home in their districts this week implementing the latest PR plans of the House Republican Conference (HRC). But will the effort fly, or be rejected by a population still smarting from the Clinton impeachment proceedings?

WASHINGTON, DC: Republican members of the U.S. House of Representatives will be back home in their districts this week implementing the latest PR plans of the House Republican Conference (HRC). But will the effort fly, or be rejected by a population still smarting from the Clinton impeachment proceedings?

WASHINGTON, DC: Republican members of the U.S. House of

Representatives will be back home in their districts this week

implementing the latest PR plans of the House Republican Conference

(HRC). But will the effort fly, or be rejected by a population still

smarting from the Clinton impeachment proceedings?



The HRC has developed a program called ’Securing America’s Future,’

which concentrates on four key issues: national defense, education

reform, strengthening retirement security and tax reform. The group is

chaired by Rep. Peter Hoekstra, a former marketing exec with Fortune 500

furniture manufacturer Herman Miller.



Each GOP House member has been given a pocket card with bullet points on

the issues that the HRC and its chairman, Rep. J.C. Watts, are

promoting, and the group is regularly churning out more substantial

position papers.



Watts has spent the last three weeks personally acquainting the HRC, GOP

campaign committees and allied coalition groups with the PR plan.



National Republican Congressional Committee communications director Ed

Blakely told PRWeek that this effort marks the first time since the 1994

’Contract with America’ that the GOP has mounted a PR push on behalf of

’a legislative agenda that presents a true contrast with the

Democrats.’



Accountability is built into the process by having each Republican House

member designate a representative to attend briefings and develop ways

to ’localize’ the presentation of the project’s key issues. The plan is

for each GOP member to promote the agenda back home in town hall

meetings and sit-downs with the local news media.



Sources contacted by PRWeek applauded the effort, but remained skeptical

as to whether the PR push will succeed, suggesting that selling the plan

nationally will not be easy. Jack Pitney, Claremont McKenna professor of

government, noted that the leadership’s fresh faces, House Speaker

Dennis Hastert and Watts, are still uncertain performers on national

TV.



Moreover, the known quantities, House Majority Leader Dick Armey and

House Majority Whip Tom DeLay, are hobbled by their association with the

Gingrich regime.



However, GOP consultant Jim Innocenzi insisted that ’the good part is

that there is unity of message.’ But to sell the plan, the GOP will need

to slice through the country’s dissatisfaction with impeachment-minded

Republicans.



Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register
Already registered?
Sign in