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The Annenberg Public Policy Center’s has sponsored several conferences in Washington DC, where we question some of those responsible for the often false and misleading ads we have covered during various campaign cycles. Key political players discuss publicly, sometimes with surprising candor, the strategies that they pursued, and the results they believe they brought about.

Here we have collected archived video of those conferences. Written transcripts are also available for most of them. Debriefing Archives

December 13, 2010 – Cash Attack: Political Advertising in a Post-Citizens United World
Sponsored by the Annenberg Public Policy Center, “Cash Attack: Political Advertising in a Post-Citizens United World” brings together the political directors and consultants who created the major independent expenditure campaigns of 2010.
News coverage of the conference:

The Big Third Party, RNC Alternatives Aren’t Done Yet (Slate, Dec. 13)

SEIU, American Crossroads look back at 2010 spending (Politico, Dec. 13)

December 15, 2008 – On Message: Voter Persuasion in the 2008 Election
Representatives from the Republican National Committee, the Democratic National Committee and several liberal and conservative groups gathered at the Newseum on December 12 to discuss their efforts to influence voters in the 2008 election. Tens of millions of dollars were spent by the political parties and outside groups to try to convince voters to back Barack Obama or John McCain.

November 9, 2007 – Pants on Fire: Political Mendacity and the Rise of Media Fact-Checkers
Newspaper and broadcast journalists are becoming more aggressive in challenging false or misleading political claims, according to two new studies that will be released Friday (Nov. 9) at a conference in Washington sponsored by the Annenberg Public Policy Center of the University of Pennsylvania.

May 25, 2007 – Judicial Campaigns: Money, Mudslinging and an Erosion of Public Trust
Thirty-nine states elect their judges in some fashion. What once were “sleepy little affairs,” judicial campaigns have become high-stakes races, drawing in big money and increasingly negative advertising campaigns. In 2006, an estimated $16 million was spent on advertising in supreme court races in 10 states, a record. If predictions hold true, contests in 2008 promise to be more expensive — and nasty.

December 6, 2004 – 527s in 2004: Did They Make a Difference?
Independent spending groups, many of them organized under section 527 of the tax code, emerged as big-money players on both sides of the 2004 presidential campaign, and House and Senate elections as well. APPC and brought together some of the leading players from both the liberal and the conservative sides, who revealed their strategies, gave details of their spending, and presented evidence of their effectiveness. The entire conference, held at the National Press Club in Washington DC, was broadcast later on C-Span.

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