Dec 9, 2021 - Politics & Policy

First look: Anita Dunn advises Dems on economy message for '22

Mike Allen
Signs from a President Biden event yesterday in Kansas City, Mo. Photo: Chase Castor/Bloomberg via Getty Images

In a midterm preview, top Democratic strategist Anita Dunn advises the party's House and Senate members to frame Republicans "as being against the economic interests of working Americans."

What she's saying: "Explicitly framing Republicans as opposing policies to lower costs does better than simply framing Republicans as the 'party of no,'" Dunn, White House senior adviser until August, writes in the memo.

  • As a message for Democrats when polls show inflation as a rising concern, Dunn writes: "Republican opposition to Democrats’ popular plans to lower the cost of living is a vulnerability for their party."
  • "Much attention has been paid to Republican attacks on inflation, but private polling data has consistently shown the popularity of the President and Democrats’ economic agenda, especially when it comes to lowering costs."

Dunn said that in a recent test of 13 criticisms of Republicans, the best-testing message was Republicans "opposed to plans that will lower costs for working families."

  • "This reflects the importance of costs and inflation right now, as we see reflected in many other data sets," she said.

The other side: Republicans see inflation as a top vulnerability for President Biden.

  • House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy said this week: "Republicans across the country are continuing to put pressure on the Biden administration to hold them accountable for this skyrocketing inflation."

Go deeper: Full memo below.

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