GOP pollster Frank Luntz has a new book out – as virtually every Republican senator is now well aware.
At a closed-door lunch Wednesday, Luntz pitched to GOP senators autographed copies of his new book – prompting an awkward reaction from the lunching session of the Senate Steering Committee, according to three sources familiar with the hush-hush meeting.
“He lost part of his audience when he said the only senator who is consistently on message is Jon Kyl – who also happened to invite him,” one GOP source said. “And he lost a lot more when he hawked autographed copies of his new book. The Luntz shtick grew old a long time ago.”
Luntz even offered to hold book events in the senators’ home states, the sources said. The book – entitled, “Win: the Key Principles to Take Your Business from Ordinary to Extraordinary,” is an “unprecedented examination of communication excellence and how top performers win in all areas of human endeavor by utilizing superb communication skills,” according to Amazon.com.
Luntz did not respond to an e-mail seeking comment, but another source familiar with the exchange said Luntz was merely joking about his book and that he praised Kyl because of his years of service before his retirement next year.
Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.), the chairman of the Steering Committee, actually was the one who invited Luntz to the meeting, an aide to the senator said.
Luntz – who has gained national prominence with his best-selling books on political messaging — has a number of detractors within the Senate GOP who view him as a relentless self-promoter. He miffed a number of Republicans when he appeared to take credit for the GOP’s political messaging during the health care debate — even though he urged a more conciliatory approach soon after President Barack Obama took office in 2009.
Still, he has some allies in the GOP among those who find his suggestions useful.
At the Wednesday meeting, Luntz reportedly urged the GOP to use Obama’s words against him, prompting some eye-rolling because the tactic is used on a constant basis on Capitol Hill, according to two sources.
For now, it remains to be seen just how many senators end up buying his 320-page book, which retails for $14 on Amazon.
I am going to read it.