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"A Grassroots Effort"


Health Insurance (Knocking on Doors for Health Insurance)

As the battle over health care continues on Capitol Hill, Democrats are organizing campaign-like neighborhood canvasses to spread their message. Organizing for America, the advocacy group that grew out of President Obama’s campaign machinery, is enlisting supporters to go door-to-door across the country to talk up the White House’s health care priorities.

Brad Woodhouse, a spokesman for the Democratic National Committee, where Organizing for America is housed, said the canvassing would start in earnest this weekend and could last through August, making it the most sustained door-to-door effort the group has had since President Obama was inaugurated. (Organizing for America also arranged canvasses earlier this year during the budget negotiations, but those were confined to a single weekend.)

Katie Wright, a spokeswoman for the Republican National Committee, said in a statement that the “Democrats face an uphill battle in convincing Americans that government-run health care will not increase costs and diminish their quality of care” and that the R.N.C. was “actively engaged in working with voters” on health care reform.

The e-mail Organizing for America sent to supporters, which claims that $1.4 million is being spent daily to obstruct health care reform, says that backers of the president need to act so that his “core principles are included in any comprehensive health care reform legislation.” (It adds that canvassers often find going door-to-door rewarding.)

Lawmakers in both houses are furiously at work trying to draft and pass health care legislation before Congress recesses in August. (As The Times’s David Herszenhorn has reported, those efforts have hit some roadblocks this week.)

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