Catholics United takes to the Radio waves

by Michael Sean Winters

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Radio advertisements are the newest avenue being used by progressive Catholic groups to drum up support in Congress for their policy agenda. The newest is from the group Catholics United and it is running now in South Bend, Indiana.

The ad features Sister Sharon Dillon whose family has lived in the area for four generations and is targeted at local Congressman Joe Donnelly who has yet to announce his position on the Clean Energy and Security Act. After praising the environmental and job-creating effects of the bill, Sister Sharon swings for the swing voters, invoking the kind of non-partisan, good for America language that most appeals to unaffiliated voters: “Together, we can create a healthier and more prosperous world. For me, it's not about partisan politics. It's about values and families, human dignity and the common good.” She only forgot to mention motherhood and apple pie. You can hear or read the ad here:

Radio advertisements are exceedingly effective for this kind of pitch. They are inexpensive. They can attain saturation coverage in areas where most people drive if they are played during rush hour. Their message is soft because you are not seeking donations or volunteers to go door-knocking, you merely want to make sure that any local polls reflect support for the policy you are advocating. Having a kind, thoughtful spokesperson is key and who wants to argue with a nun? These kinds of ads have been a staple of conservative political advocacy for years but now liberals are catching on.

Tune in to see which way Congressman Donnelly votes on the bill. If he fails to support it, he will have to answer to Sr. Sharon and those whose support she is winning right now on the drive home.

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