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National Republicans launch ads tying 6th District Democrats to single-payer health care system

Author: Ernest Luning - August 3, 2017 - Updated: August 3, 2017

NRCC-Single-Payer-ad.jpg
Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer are among the Democrats pictured in a National Republican Congressional Committee digital ad linking the party to a proposed national single-payer health care system. The ads started airing for a two-week, six-figure run in Colorado's 6th Congressinal District on Thursday, Aug. 3, 2017. (Photo via YouTube)Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer are among the Democrats pictured in a National Republican Congressional Committee digital ad linking the party to a proposed national single-payer health care system. The ads started airing for a two-week, six-figure run in Colorado’s 6th Congressinal District on Thursday, Aug. 3, 2017. (Photo via YouTube)

A national Republican group is attempting to link congressional candidate Jason Crow and other Colorado Democrats to a single-payer health care proposal with a six-figure digital ad campaign that kicks off Thursday.

Featuring scary negative images of House and Senate Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer, the National Republican Congressional Committee’s Facebook ad should show up on mobile devices wielded by swing voters in the 6th Congressional District for the next two weeks, NRCC spokesman Jack Pandol told Colorado Politics.

Some leading Democrats are pushing for a single-payer health care system modeled on Medicare, and Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren has recommended that Democrats run on the issue in next year’s midterm elections.

Similar ads will be running in targeted districts around the country, Pandol said, although in Colorado they’ll only be targeted at 6th District voters.

“Big government has destroyed the American health care system as we know it,” an announcer says at the beginning of the 60-second ad, which then warns viewers of “a new plan brought to you by the same Democrats who brought you Obamacare.” Next, in a series of split-second clips, several nationally prominent Democrats — including Pelosi, Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders — utter the words, “single payer.”

In case there’s any ambiguity, the ad displays the words “a European-style single payer health care plan” for a moment before showing a brief clip of a newscaster describing the case of “little Charlie Gard.” The British infant, born with a rare genetic disorder, died last week after the National Health Service wouldn’t allow his parents to travel to New York for experimental treatment. Conservative Americans took up the case as an example of government-run health care gone amok.

“What does this mean for you?” the announcer asks. “Trillions in higher taxes, government control of your doctor, hospital and even prescriptions. It could even abolish Medicare Part D and the VA.”

While the ad doesn’t mention Crow — “Tell Nancy Pelosi and Colorado Democrats we can’t afford single payer health care,” the ad concludes — Pandol left no doubt who the campaign group considers its target.

“While Nancy Pelosi and Elizabeth Warren push the Democratic Party even further to the left on health care, Jason Crow has been conspicuously silent,” Pandol said. “As the Washington establishment’s anointed candidate, Crow must either explain to Colorado families why he supports Pelosi’s European-style single payer fantasy or own the failed status quo.”

Crow is one of three Democrats running in the suburban battleground district for the chance to take on five-term U.S. Rep. Mike Coffman, an Aurora Republican. The other two declared candidates are author and former Obama administration official Levi Tillemann and attorney David Aarestad.

In a July 21 Facebook post, Crow criticizes Coffman for “offer[ing] a fig leaf to distract us from his weak record on health care” with a proposal described in an Associated Press article. Now that GOP legislation to overhaul the nation’s health care system has floundered in the Senate, Crow writes, “After eight years of voting the party line to repeal (Obamacare), Rep. Coffman says the word ‘bipartisan’ and hopes that it glosses over his record of putting his party before his constituents. It’s too little, too late.”

Crow suggests Coffman consider “stabilizing the individual market and lowering the cost of prescription drugs” by allowing the federal government to negotiate drug prices for Medicare patients, as well as a reinsurance program to help companies cover high-risk patients.

“Without question, our current healthcare law has its challenges and should be improved,” Crow says. “But to go back on the progress we’ve made would be a mistake and would mean turning our backs on the 20 million Americans who now have access to healthcare, including those with pre-existing conditions. Rather we must come together to resolve the law’s shortcomings and ensure that we keep costs low and care accessible, and then debate the best path forward.”
Ernest Luning

Ernest Luning

Ernest Luning is a political correspondent for Colorado Politics. He has covered politics and government for newspapers and online news sites in Colorado for more than 25 years, including at the Highlands Ranch Herald, the Jefferson Sentinels chain of community newspapers and the Aurora Sentinel, where he was the city hall and cops reporter. After editing the Aurora Daily Sun, he was a political reporter and blogger for The Colorado Independent site. Since 2009, he has been the senior political reporter and occasional editor for The Colorado Statesman.


3 comments

  • Rachel Toplis

    August 3, 2017 at 10:58 am

    Is it not a little misleading to say the National Health Service wouldn’t allow Charlie Gard to travel to America? My understanding is that Charlie’s doctors at Great Ormond Street Hospital felt it was not in his best interest. This is might seem like a slight difference on paper. But if I am correct, then the decision to stop treatment and allow Charlie to end his suffering is not government interference, but rather a decision by a patient’s doctors when they believe it is not in his best interest. Just my two cents.

    Reply

  • Mayzey

    August 4, 2017 at 7:10 pm

    I support singke payer. Get insurance cimpamies out, period.

    Reply

  • Judith Clausen

    August 4, 2017 at 9:42 pm

    Repealing the ACA is crazy. Fixing it is not. Bipartisan solution is necessary.

    Reply

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