News · Press Release

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING: DCCC digital campaign exposing lack of GOP town halls garners widespread coverage

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT, the DCCC launched digital ads against twenty-five targeted Republicans starting this week in order to expose their roles in passing the House repeal and ripoff bill and refusals to hold public town halls in their districts. The Google Search ads are geo-targeted and attached to a wide-range of search terms relating to the Republican target, district, health care, and town halls. These prominently placed ads direct people to individualized websites where constituents can automatically use Facebook and Twitter plug-ins to call on their member of Congress to hold a town hall.

Here’s a look at some of the coverage…

CNN: First on CNN: Democrats target GOP House members who haven’t held town halls

Democrats are set to launch a month-long effort to penalize vulnerable House Republicans for not holding town hall meetings over their August recess.

[…] In Washington, Democrat Kim Schrier’s video launching her campaign against Rep. Dave Reichert was themed around an empty chair. Democrat Dean Phillips in Minnesota, running against Rep. Erik Paulsen, is showing up to farmers’ markets and community events on a 1960 International Harvester milk truck to harken back to a more collegial time and push the theme that he’s showing up and talking to voters while Paulsen isn’t.

The Hill: Dems slam GOP lawmakers for not holding town halls

The ads, run through Google, target search engine users who search their lawmaker’s name and directs them to micro-sites featuring clocks detailing the last time their representative spoke to constituents. The ads launched on Tuesday and will run from the August recess until the start of September.

NBC: Lawmakers Holding Fewer Town Halls During This Summer Break

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has launched digital ads targeting 25 Republicans, including Ryan, who have not scheduled town halls over the break.

Salon: Gone missing: New ad campaign targets GOP lawmakers who refuse to hold a town hall

The ads will tap into the energy of the resistance movement — which has been active since President Donald Trump was inaugurated in January. Constituents have actively communicated with their elected officials at town halls, often registering their disapproval of Republicans’ plans to repeal Obamacare.

FL-25/26: Diario de las Americas: El duro receso de senadores y representantes republicanos de la Florida

El Comité de Campaña Demócrata del Congreso, por ejemplo, acaba de poner un aviso pagado en Google, que irá hasta el final del receso de los parlamentarios el próximo 5 de septiembre.

Es un sitio web en el que se contabilizan los días, las horas, los minutos y los segundos que Curbelo sigue sin hacer las reuniones comunitarias en su distrito. Muestra también artículos de prensa en los que se reseñan las exigencias de los votantes para que haya reuniones comunitarias.

Y da la posibilidad de que los usuarios puedan pedir una reunión con Curbelo a través de Twitter o Facebook.

FL-26: Miami Herald: Democrats on Curbelo: ‘His town hall schedule doesn’t exist’

National Democrats are using the August recess — Congress’ longest break of the year — to campaign against the lawmakers the part plans to target in 2018, including Miami Republican Rep. Carlos Curbelo.

[…]The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee has created websites it plans to promote on Google ads purportedly linking to (in this case) Curbelo’s town hall schedule. When users click on curbelotownhallwatch.com, they’re taken to a page set to look like a 404 web error.

IL-06:  Chicago Tribune: Morning Spin: *DCCC targets Rep. Peter Roskam

The campaign arm of U.S. House Democrats plans a weekslong digital ad campaign beginning Wednesday to take Republican U.S. Rep. Peter Roskam to task for not holding a town hall meeting during the August congressional break.

MI-06: Detroit News: Dems target Upton in ads

Democrats this week upped their attacks on longtime Republican Rep. Fred Upton. The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee launched Google search ads and a website criticizing him for not holding town hall meetings in his southwest Michigan district.

They direct searchers to uptontownhallwatch.com, a website that says, “WHOOPS! His town hall schedule doesn’t exist! In fact, Congressman Fred Upton hasn’t had a town hall in … 2,724 days.”

NC-02: McClatchy DC: Rep. Holding won’t have a town hall. Democrats are trying to make that a big issue

The ads will appear on Google during searches for Holding and assorted related search terms. Searches originating from Holding’s district will see the ads. The ads include a link to a website with a counting clock. In Holding’s case, the clock claims Holding has not held a town hall in 1,650 days.

Last week, Holding’s office confirmed that he did not have any town hall events scheduled for the August recess. In March, Holding said town halls have become “opportunities to protest.”

NC-02: Wilson Times: Our Opinion: Voters deserve chance to hear from Holding in town hall meeting

Rep. George Holding’s reluctance to hold town hall meetings has made him an easy target in the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s crosshairs.

The fundraising group launched a website, HoldingTownHallWatch.com, keeping tabs on the number of days he’s gone without a town hall in the 2nd Congressional District, which includes the western half of Wilson County.

[…] Responsiveness should not be a partisan issue. By declining to hold town-hall meetings, Holding has given unnecessary ammunition to Democratic groups who hope to unseat him in the 2018 midterm. Sam Searcy and Wendy Ella May, both Democrats, say they plan to run against Holding next year.

NY-19: Albany Times Union: DCCC Google ad targets Faso over town halls

The ad, which is geo-targeted in the 19th district, directs users to fasotownhallwatch.com, a faux 404 error page that states “WHOOPS! His town hall schedule doesn’t exist! In fact, Congressman John Faso hasn’t had a town hall in…” with a running counter since the last town hall meeting. Because Faso has not held a public forum without a lottery attendance, the counter shows it has been running since Jan. 1.

The page also features negative Faso headlines and directs visitors to email the congressman at his campaign email address.

NY-19: Times Herald-Record (The Fray): DCCC launches Google ad campaign against Faso

The advertisements for Faso will take people to Fasotownhallwatch.com. The website says at the top “404 no town halls found” and has a countdown clock to when the DCCC says the last town hall-style public meeting was held. It also has links to news articles or opinion pieces about Faso, an invitation to email Faso’s campaign to demand a town hall meeting, and links to tweet or post on Facebook.

PA-07, PA-08: Politics PA: DCCC Launches Google Ads and Websites Against Fitzpatrick and Meehan

The websites have a counter that counts up the time since the Congressmen’s last town hall meeting, links to articles about the people calling for town halls, and the Congressmen’s local office asking people to call and demand an in-person town hall. The websites are fitzpatricktownhallwatch.com and meehantownhallwatch.com.  

These sorts of websites are used as a way to drop some opposition research in an entertaining way to supporters and engage with them.  

TX-07: Texas Tribune (The Blast): DCCC hits Culberson on town halls

National Democrats are targeting U.S. Rep. John Culberson, R-Houston, over his lack of town halls since voting to repeal and replace Obamacare.

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, the campaign arm of House Democrats, has started running Google search ads that tease a schedule for Culberson’s town halls but then lead to an error page.

“WHOOPS! His town hall schedule doesn’t exist,” says the page, which includes a countdown since his last town hall and media coverage of how it went.

Culberson is one of three GOP incumbents in Texas that the DCCC is looking to unseat in 2018. The other two are Will Hurd of Helotes and Pete Sessions of Dallas.

UT-04: Salt Lake Tribune: Democratic group launches ad buy criticizing Rep. Love for not holding town halls

A Democratic group is targeting GOP Rep. Mia Love for not hosting any town halls, launching a digital advertising campaign and a website that points out that the last time she took questions from a large in-person audience was in 2015.

WI-01: WisPolitics: DCCC targets Ryan on town halls

The site for Ryan is Ryantownhallwatch.com. The Google Search ads will direct people to the site which has an empty chair and microphone at the top with “404 no town halls found.” The site also includes a clock counting the days, hours, minutes and seconds since Ryan, R-Janesville, had a public town hall.


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