Society

Video: Corp. Lobbying Firm's Secret Memo on Smearing Occupy Wall Street

| by Michael Allen

MSNBC's 'Up w/ Chris Hayes' (video below) obtained a memo from the lobbying firm Clark Lytle Geduldig & Cranford addressed to one of their clients, the American Bankers Association. The memo (below) outlined a plan on how to discredit the Occupy Wall Street movement and any politicians that dared support it.

CLGC’s memo proposes that the ABA pay CLGC $850,000 to conduct “opposition research” on Occupy Wall Street in order to construct “negative narratives” about the protests and politicians. The memo also asserts that Democratic victories in 2012 would be detrimental for Wall Street and targets specific races in which it says Wall Street would benefit by electing Republicans instead.

According to the memo, if Democrats embrace OWS, “This would mean more than just short-term political discomfort for Wall Street. … It has the potential to have very long-lasting political, policy and financial impacts on the companies in the center of the bullseye.”

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“… (T)he bigger concern,” the memo says, “should be that Republicans will no longer defend Wall Street companies.”

Two of the memo’s authors, partners Sam Geduldig and Jay Cranford, previously worked for House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio. Geduldig joined CLGC before Boehner became speaker;  Cranford joined CLGC this year after serving as the speaker’s assistant for policy.

“Our Government Relations staff did receive the proposal – it was unsolicited - and we chose not to act on it in any way,” said ABA spokesperson Jeff Sigmund to Hayes’ show. However, CLGC states on its website that it has had ABA as a client before in the past, in addition to the  U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other financial companies.