Talk:Harry and Louise

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I propose the following rewrite to the Harry and Louise page, as the current one is factually incorrect.

Threatened with a measure that would severely impact their industry, the Health Insurance Association of America (HIAA) hired public affairs consultants, Ben Goddard and Rick Claussen of Goddard Claussen, to do something notoriously difficult: get the attention of elected officials when there was no election in sight. Positioning “Harry and Louise,” an average American couple, to speak “for” not “to” the American people, they created a campaign that highlighted the public’s concerns about the Clinton plan. The unique campaign caught the attention of the media, the White House and the American people.

“Harry and Louise” depicted a couple, portrayed by actors Harry Johnson and Louise Caire Clark, despairing over the allegedly bureaucratic nature of the plan and urged viewers to contact their representatives in Congress. It was widely credited as being a major factor in the plan's ultimate defeat, and is often cited as a landmark moment in the use of public relations techniques for lobbying. The Annenberg School of Communications audit of news coverage reported that the mythical characters garnered more press coverage than Vice President Al Gore and Majority Leader Richard Gephardt combined.

The media continues to write about “Harry & Louise” in the context of health care policy debates and, most recently, the Clinton campaign accused the Obama campaign of copying the couple in a campaign mailing.

The ad was also one of several prominent ads parodied in the 78th Academy Awards (March 2006). An older couple sitting at the kitchen table bemoans the "foreign-sounding names" of the best actress nominees, then praises Reese Witherspoon for having an all-American name.

I have tried to reference certain aspects, but cannot figure out how to do it.

Hilarykoehl (talk) 19:26, 19 March 2008 (UTC)



This page is EXTREMELY POV and needs to be changed at once.

"Propagandist Rush Limbaugh also fueled the anti-health care debate on his radio show with frequent "calculated rants" aimed at his dittohead audience."

"Childs advised industry health reform opponents on selecting names for their fake grassroots coalitions."

Finally, while there were good quotes from Consumer Reports, that organization never permits quotes to be used in outside publications. While this could certainly qualify as Fair Use and therefore exemptable, I'm more comfortable with starting this article over from scratch.

Wellspring 13:21, 18 January 2006 (UTC)

Actually, Harry and Louise made a return prior to 2002, when the Health Insurance Association of America, most probably in 2000, brought them back as advocates for extending coverage to uninsured Americans. Ronit52 (talk) 04:07, 23 December 2007 (UTC)

Edits by User:66.208.15.194 and User:Hilarykoehl[edit]

Please see Wikipedia:Conflict of interest/Noticeboard#Harry and Louise and edits by Goddard Claussen (ad agency). --MCB (talk) 22:27, 19 March 2008 (UTC)

New ad campaign[edit]

Greetings. I am new to this page and article (and Wikipedia overall) but would like some help on updating the section on the July 2009 ad campaign just launched. I just saw the ad on FOX News Channel and I immediately went to the website. Within minutes of receiving negative feedback (polite), the website was pulled. Now I don't know how you document that with a verifiable source, but it was this Harry and Louise article which exposed the fact that they are basically w-ores for whichever lobbyist from the health care industry is willing to hire them. Cheers! ObserverNY (talk) 16:49, 21 July 2009 (UTC)ObserverNY

Yes, Harry and Louise are actors for hire. So? 4granite (talk) 21:21, 25 July 2009 (UTC)