CBS News has reportedly hired Frank Luntz, the Republican strategist and pollster best known for helping Republicans craft often-deceptive messaging to torpedo liberal policies. In his post announcing the move, Politico media reporter Dylan Byers writes that Luntz will “make a number of appearances across the network between now and Election Day.” Luntz’s hiring comes only a few months after New York Times Magazine contributor Robert Draper reported that Luntz orchestrated a 2009 meeting where prominent Republicans formulated a plan to win back Congress and the White House.
In his book Do Not Ask What Good We Do: Inside the U.S. House of Representatives, Draper reported that Luntz “organized a dinner” on Obama’s inauguration night featuring a handful of “the Republican Party’s most energetic thinkers.” The attendees — which included current vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan — reportedly emerged from the nearly four hour dinner “almost giddily” after having agreed on “a way forward.”
Luntz’s influence in GOP politics isn’t limited to organizing high-level strategy dinners — he’s been credited with coining some of the most infamous lines from conservative media figures and politicians.
Luntz has been a regular fixture on Fox News for years. His appearances have featured him praising dishonest conservative ads and asking focus groups questions about whether Obama is a socialist. During a 2010 appearance on The O’Reilly Factor, Luntz praised the Chamber of Commerce for having “done some of the best advertising across the country” without disclosing that the Chamber was one of his corporate clients.