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Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Topic - Brett Di Resta
Brett Di Resta teaches students how to find and spread information that can be used as political ammunition. With a presidential campaign gone bitterly negative before the opponents have even tapped gloves, and a new breed of free-spending Super PACS set to pour millions into opposition research, it's a timely skill set.
Picture this: Newt Gingrich discussing national health care, arguing for wealth redistribution and an individual insurance mandate, all while sitting next to Hillary Clinton, the whole discussion caught on videotape. A sneaky, fact-fudging attack ad, unleashed by a rival presidential contender or enemy super PAC? Not exactly.
"I saw that and was like, 'Really?'" Mr. Di Resta said. "Most of the guys I know in this business are like me. We're not doing it to stab people in the back. We think facts are important. I would think that Brian Williams also would think that facts are important."
The most important research, Mr. Di Resta said, is often defensive — candidates hire researchers to probe their own weaknesses, the rough equivalent of having a scout team mimic a rival's playbook during football practice.