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As if the Linkage Wasn’t Blatant Enough

3794866057_5092536c28_b.jpgOne of the key thing the astroturfing teabaggers and their Republican fellow travelers have learned to do is to strongly disavow the very idea that the teabaggers’ efforts to shut down Democratic legislators’ town hall forums are anything but wholesome spontaneous grass-roots affairs, with no corporate or Republican backing whatsoever.

As Jason Rosenbaum points out over at The Seminal, that just got a little bit harder to say with a straight face.  He links to a MyLeftNutmeg piece showing a corporate rep for Anthem Blue Cross parading his company swag around at a town hall even for Chris Murphy (D-CT) in Simsbury.   Even better, he passes along this TPM piece on a local "grassroots protester" in Wisconsin.  This protester, who claimed to have no political affilation as she tried to disrupt Congressman Steve Kagen’s (D-WI) town hall forum, is actually Heather Blish, a big-time Republican activist who was up until last year vice-chairman of the local county GOP.  In fact, she even worked for the Republican opponent of Kagen, and, according to her own resume, is affiliated with the Republican National Committee!

Then again, Republicans and their conservative comrades have lots of astroturfing experience, and the mass media has just as much experience in pretending it never happens.  Take this blast from the past, for example, in which the NYT was notable for being one of the few prominent TradMed outfits to report the whole truth:

In December 2004, FreedomWorks employee Sandra Jacques was introduced at a White House economic conference as a "single mom" from Iowa who supported the Bush administration‘s Social Security privatization plan. According to White House budget director, Jacques was was an example of how Bush promotes his agenda with testimonials from "regular folks." As the New York Times pointed out, however, "Ms. Jaques is not any random single mother. She is the Iowa state director of a conservative advocacy group." [5]

In the words of John Wayne’s Ethan Edwards, "Do I hafta draw ya a picture?!?"

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