Say, isn't this Astroturfing?

The White House and its allies have tossed around accusations of “astroturfing” — fake grassroots movements — at the opposition to ObamaCare with gusto, as town-hall meetings erupt in anger and acrimony towards elected officials who don’t bother to read bills before voting for them.  They claim that powerful forces have pushed these overdressed people into these meetings, and that their strategies are coordinated from on high, rather than representing a truly sincere opposition.

If so, what does this latest missive from Barack Obama and the DNC mean?

Friend —

I wanted to send you an urgent invitation to an important Town Hall with Sen. Jeanne Shaheen on Thursday morning. She’ll be talking to constituents and gathering feedback — this is an ideal opportunity to make sure your support of health insurance reform is seen and heard at exactly the right time to make a huge difference.

Our congressional representatives are back home this month, and they’re facing more and more pressure from special interests on health insurance reform. It’s critical that we get out there and show them where we stand.

I hope you can join us.

What: Health Care Town Hall with
Sen. Jeanne Shaheen

Where: Grafton Town Hall
E Grafton Rd.
Grafton, NH 03240

When: Thursday, August 6th
10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.


Our representatives are under attack by Washington insiders, insurance companies, and well-financed special interests who don’t go a day without spreading lies and stirring up fear. We need to show that we’re sick and tired of it, and that we’re ready for real change, this year.

Please come to the Town Hall, and make sure that the most powerful voices in this debate are those calling for real reform, not angrily clamoring for the status quo.

RSVP here:



Tim Arsenault
New Hampshire Field Director
Organizing for America

P.S. — Before the event, please print off a flyer to display and make sure that your support is visible.

That’s what Organizing for America, “a project of the Democratic National Committee,” has sent by e-mail to its campaign list.  The flyer that the DNC wants people to hold as they outshout anyone else in the room can be seen here:

Because nothing says grassroots like the Obama campaign logo on the top, and Obama’s website URL on the bottom.  That small print at the bottom reads, “Paid for by Organizing for America, a project of the Democratic National Committee … This communication is not authorized by any candidate or candidate’s committee.”

Uh, sure … except for the Obama logo, the Obama URL, and the weird “Oh, thank you Dear Leader” message, who would think that it was authorized by Obama?

Update: Maybe the DNC and Obama campaign should have checked with Shaheen first:

There’s just one problem. contacted Shaheen’s office who confirms that the senator is in Washington and will not attend the town hall meeting. Staff will field questions in Grafton instead.

These are the people who want to run your health care.