Don Draper, Call Your Office

On Sunday, the dreaded discussion about Democrat branding and marketing woes made the rounds of the Beltway chat show hosts and their guests yet again. First up, the always objective and unbiased Christiane Amanpour, Nielsen-challenged host of ABC's This Week, who dropped by ABC's Good Morning America to reassure interviewer Bianna Golodryga, who -- purely coincidentally -- pay no attention to her own always objective and unbiased reporting -- is married to Peter R. Orszag, former budget director for the Obama Administration:

CHRISTIANE AMANPOUR: Well, Bianna, it's the economy, as so many people say. People are feeling frustrated and worried about that. Unemployment's still at 9.6%, stubbornly remaining there. It's the messaging, Democrats admitting that some of the successful legislation they've passed and successful breaks and successful stimulus for many people, simply the message hasn't got out. And the president himself told the New York Times that perhaps they were too focused on what they said was doing the right thing in terms of policy and not being as concerned or as attentive to politics and the politics of those actions.

On Face the Nation yesterday, Ed Rendell sounded a similar tone:

Two governors sparred over the message Democratic candidates are sending this election— if it’s the right one and if it is even being heard at all.

Governor Ed Rendell, D-Penn., started it all by blaming the Republican voter excitement on his party’s bad communication. Rendell said on CBS “Face the Nation,” “I think this administration has done a great job… We just did a lousy job communicating it. We let the Republicans, to their credit, out-spin us a year-and-a-half ago, and we’re paying the price.”

Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty, disagreed, “I don’t think it’s about communication. I think it’s about the product. They’re trying to sell something that isn’t any good. And what we have now is an economy that remains in the doldrums.”

Well, exactly. But note that all of the talk of branding, marketing and “poor communication” involves a president who has been compared by his acolytes to JFK, FDR, Lincoln and even Julius Caesar -- and a Speaker of the House who was dubbed as recently as two weeks ago as "one of the most effective speakers in congressional history," in a gushing profile by CBS's Rita Braver. (Oh and Harry Reid...)