The US Chamber of Commerce communications team is in overdrive, following a weeks-long battle in the media that has touched on issues as far ranging as healthcare reform and climate change.
This week, a group of activists called The Yes Men, pretending to be part of the Chamber, sent out a press release and staged a press conference, informing the media that the Chamber had reversed its policy on climate change legislation. The event was broken up by the Chamber's own communications spokesman, Eric Wohlschlegel. It garnered major media attention and raised questions about journalists' credibility in a 24/7 news cycle.
Another company, Mohawk Fine Paper, announced it was quitting the Chamber, due to the group's stance on climate change legislation. It is one of a handful of companies like Apple and PG&E that have defected from the Chamber's membership in the last month.
A story in The Washington Post looks at the growing rift between the Obama Administration and the Chamber. And, just last week, the group launched its "Campaign for Free Enterprise," considered its largest communications effort.
The National Journal also released lobbying figures for the third quarter of this year, showing that the Chamber is the top spender for the quarter with $34.7 million. PhRMA, AARP, American Medical Association, and the Business Roundtable rounded out the top five.