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On September 3rd, leftist group “MoveOn.org” announced that it would create advertisements to tell Americans how much money their elected officials were taking in campaign contributions from health care and health insurance interests. In an email to its members, MoveOn said that its new ads would, “…let voters know exactly how much money their representatives have taken from the insurance industry, whose top goal this year is to kill the public option.”
Here at FreedomWorks, we believe that it is imperative that accurate information be made available to the public. We salute MoveOn.org and wholeheartedly support their efforts to take on such a noble cause. At FreedomWorks, we back President Obama's call for "the most transparent government in history."
Although we applaud MoveOn.org’s initiative with the ad series, to date they have only released two ads, both of which seem to ignore the top recipients of health care and health insurance money. We hope this is a mere oversight, and is not motivated by partisan politics.
The commercials, entitled “Caught Red-Handed”, focus on two congressmen--Reps. Patrick Tiberi (R-OH) and Dave Reichert (R-WA)-- and the money that they have accepted from health care and health insurance interests over the course of their entire careers. According to the ads, Tiberi has accepted $682,394 and Reichert has accepted $105,958. But these figures pale in comparison to the $2,890,631 that Chairman of the Senate Finance Committee Max Baucus (D-MT) has accepted over the course of his career. Even more astounding, President Obama has accepted $20,064,596 in campaign contributions from health care and health insurance interests. That’s 25 times more than Tiberi and Reichert combined.
Recognizing MoveOn.org’s commitment to providing factual, non-partisan information to the public, we at FreedomWorks are hopeful that these two ads are just the first of many. We also hope that after taking an unbiased look at all of the information, MoveOn.org will recognize that both Republicans and Democrats alike have received massive amounts of campaign money from health care and health insurance interests.
We know our friends at MoveOn.org are busy, so to help them more quickly expose the links between politicians and health interests, we at FreedomWorks have compiled some statistics for them to use any time they'd like.
Did you know…
…that Senator Baucus—the man tasked with writing the Senate health reform bill—accepted $1,171,025 in campaign funds from health care and health insurance interests in 2008 alone?
…that in 2008 54% of the campaign contributions given by health care and health insurance interests were given to Democrats and that in preparation for the 2010 elections, health care and health insurance interests have given 61% of their contributions to Democrats?
…that of the top 20 health companies to give money for the 2010 election cycle, 19 have contributed more to Democrats than to Republicans and that one company, Doctors Hospital at Renaissance, has given 100% of its contributions to Democrats?
…that the 5 Senators who have received the most in campaign contributions from health care and health insurance interests for 2010 are all Democrats: Harry Reid (D-NV) $401,350, Blanche Lincoln (D-AR) $353,400, Charles Schumer (D-NY) $289,650, Arlen Specter (D-PA) $282,010 and Ron Wyden (D-OR) $258,650.
…that 4 of the 5 Representatives who have received the most in campaign contributions from the health care and health insurance interests for 2010 are Democrats: Kendrick Meek (D-FL) $208,350, Frank Pallone Jr. (D-NJ) $197,950, Steny Hoyer (D-MD) $183,910, Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) $156,200 and Roy Blunt (R-MO) $137,100 .
…that in the 2008 presidential campaign, Barack Obama accepted $19,439,769 in campaign contributions from health care and health insurance interests? That’s over $12 million more than John McCain ($7,393,547).
…that the 11 Republican candidates for president in 2008 received a combined total of $12,917,311 in campaign funds from health care and health insurance interests? That’s over $6.5 million dollars less than Mr. Obama accepted by himself.
These are just a few of the numerous facts worth examining when investigating the relationship between politicians and health care and health insurance interests. They may help to explain why the two major reform bills—the Baucus bill and H.R. 3200—stand to make the health insurance companies billions at the expense of consumers and taxpayers. We look forward to future exposés on this topic from MoveOn, and do hope that their limited effort so far is not because they were disappioned with the facts they found when they began to look at the numbers. And we don't expect anything for our work on this, which they know-- we've never had a problem with offering them a little extra help in the past.