"You know this is a trap."
How many action movies use that line? The girl's been kidnapped, and the bad guy has made sure the hero knows where she is. Someone tells the hero, "It's a trap."
And he says, "Of course it is, but I still have to go."
This is the same thing. Pres. Obama's health care summit is clearly a trap for the GOP.
If they go, when the GOP doesn't back the president's health care bill, he can claim he tried to be bipartisan and ram in through.
If they don't go, the networks will show a sea of empty chairs every time health care comes up.
What do you do when you know it's a trap? You try to figure out how to turn the trap around on your foe.
Republicans, this is what you need to do:
The cameras will be there. Use them to your advantage. Don't let them paint you as "the party of no." Be the party of "this-not-that."
Start every statement with things like:
"Since this has failed everywhere it's been tried..."
"Since this will be ruinously expensive..."
"Since the American people have clearly said they don't want this..."
Then introduce your ideas.
Let the doctors among you do a lot of the talking. Maybe even have them use phrases like, "I wouldn't expect a lawyer to understand this but..." People trust doctors and are suspicious of lawyers. Use that.
And try to keep this from looking like a funeral. But if you're successful, it might be the wake for the Dem's crappy health care reform bill.