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The Name Game: GOP Edition

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What do you do when you’re an-ultra conservative candidate trying to outdo another ultra-conservative candidate — one who has been labeled by the National Journal one of the most conservative members of Congress?

Do you trumpet your endorsements from conservative groups? Blame your opponent for the Affordable Care Act? Photoshop him in to a picture with the president?

If you’re Rep. Steve Stockman in Texas, trying to unseat Sen. John Cornyn, you do all three! Never mind that those endorsement claims were premature, or that Stockman’s opponent has long been against Obamacare. As long as you can clumsily use Photoshop to cut-and-paste your opponent’s face into a picture with a black man occupying the White House, you’re home free!

Stockman may be on to something. It seems Americans these days are easily confounded when it comes to anything Obama. Just look at the video of comedian Jimmy Kimmel asking average Americans to choose which they liked more: Obamacare or the Affordable Care Act. Never mind that they’re the same thing. It seem a lot of the people Kimmel polled were 100% convinced that one was bad, the other good.

Sure, it’s funny. But the difference can mean life or death. Like that couple in Ohio — the one that Time Magazine this week reported was 100% against “Obamacare” — until they weren’t.

When the couple – proud owners of a $500/mo. private insurance package that they found out was “worthless” – were facing tens of thousands of dollars in cancer treatment costs, they went to an insurance agent for help. They were unequivocal: They didn’t want “any part” of the president’s health care program. Obamacare, they believed, would be expensive and wouldn’t cover the husband’s pre-existing conditions. Obamacare was bad, bad, bad! (Thank you, FOX Disinformation News.)

So the agent sent them to the Ohio exchange and set them up with a new plan — which he never called Obamacare. The couple say their new plan, which will cover the pricey treatments, is “wonderful” and “a godsend.”

It’s heartbreaking – not to mention insane – that Obama’s name is so poisonous to so many Americans. Is racism to blame? Ignorance? Or are liberals just not naming things right?

That last question got the wheels in our brains turning! Have we stumbled upon the real secret to selling progressive programs to Americans? Does everything depend on a simple name change?

Conservatives have long known how to wrap their convictions in words and phrases that sound palatable to people who don’t share their convictions. So let’s get in the game! What’s something that we could re-name to get conservative support? What do YOU think?

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