AFL-CIO: Ads Target GOP Reps. in Key Races
Entering the fray over prescription drug costs this election cycle, the AFL-CIO has released ads targeting certain Republican representatives that opposed the White House-backed prescription drug plan -- H.R. 4680, the Medicare Rx 2000 Act. The first ad aired for one week in mid-July in the districts of GOP Reps. Charlie Bass (N.H.); Ernest Lee Fletcher (Ky.); Don Sherwood (Pa.); James Rogan (Calif.) and Steven Kuykendall (Calif.). The ad running in Bass' district stated: "Prescription drug costs are exploding. Yet Congressman Charles Bass voted against guaranteeing seniors prescription benefits under Medicare and backed a private insurance plan that'll leave millions without coverage." The ad urges voters to "Call Bass. Tell him to quit putting special interests ahead of working families." This month, the AFL-CIO released a second ad against Bass and Fletcher, and also targeted Sen. Spencer Abraham (R-Mich). The ad features pharmacist Michael Weisman, who states: "The senior citizens today can't afford their medication. They come in, and I know they're skipping medication so they can pay for their food. With the rising cost of medication today, it could wipe out anybody at any time." The announcer states: "Yet Congressman Charles Bass sided with the drug industry. He voted no to guarantee Medicare prescription benefits that would protect seniors from runaway prices. Tell Bass, 'quit putting special interests ahead of working families.'" Weisman concludes: "Watching people walk away without their medication takes a little bit out of me every day" (National Journal Group, 8/15). To view the first ad, go to http://video.cloakroom.com/2000archive/08/0814aflcio1.rm. To view the second ad, go to http://video.cloakroom.com/2000archive/08/0803aflcio1.rm.This is part of the California Healthline Daily Edition, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.