August 3rd, 2009
03:23 PM ET
5 years ago

Liberal groups step up efforts against Democrat Ben Nelson

Sen. Ben Nelson is the target of a new ad campaign.
Sen. Ben Nelson is the target of a new ad campaign.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – Two liberal groups that have been accusing Nebraska Sen. Ben Nelson of undermining health care reform are stepping up their efforts to paint the conservative Democrat as an obstructionist.

Democracy for America and the Progressive Change Campaign Committee - a political action committee that supports "bold progressive" candidates - said Monday that they're tripling the amount of anti-Nelson television ads running in Nebraska and doubling the number of ads running in Washington.

The minute-long TV ad, funded by online donations, features a Nebraska resident accusing Nelson of "leading the charge to delay health care reform this summer." The ad will now run 600 times in Nebraska and 100 times in the nation's capital.

The move comes after Nelson's office sharply pushed back against the ad last week, suggesting that "health care reform may be dead by the end of August" if the PCCC spots keep running. The groups interpreted that as a sign Nelson may try to derail health care reform simply because of some tough TV ads.

"Nelson actually threatened to kill health care reform for millions of Americans because of … his own bruised ego," said PCCC member Michael Snook in a message to the coalition's e-mail list on Monday announcing the new ad buy.

Last week, Nelson spokesman Jake Thompson suggested health care reform may die at the end of August. In the same statement, he called the ads "ridiculous" and disputed the notion that the senator is leading the charge against health care reform. Thompson said Nelson wants to support bipartisan legislation that reduces costs, expands coverage and improves quality of care.

Thompson did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the latest move from the two groups.


Filed under: Ben Nelson • Health care
soundoff (39 Responses)
  1. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    You can't play both sides of the fence Sen. Nelson. It's our way or the highway!

    August 3, 2009 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  2. Moderate Democrat

    Republicans: Please stop mentioning TORT reform, it's simply another LIE from your moronic party. It's basis of benefit to the health care reform rests 100% in the assumption that the Insurance companies would somehow, magically and miraculously pass those savings on to the consumer....which has NEVER happened before in the history of their existance. So if you believe it will do anything for anyone other then a doctor that kills someone...then we have a bridge to Hawaii you are likely to buy!

    TORT reform is a LIE: It helps rich people keep their money despite being professionaly incapable, but NOTHING for Health Care reform. It is a way for the government to tell you that your life is not worth a THING...you can NOT sue if you are murdered by a doctor, and if you can, then the GOVERNMENT will decide how much your life is worth.

    August 3, 2009 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  3. jason, tx

    He is an obstructionist and ought to be thrown out of the Democratic caucus like Lieberman should have.

    August 3, 2009 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  4. Bob in Pa

    Hang in there Ben !
    Don't let them bother you. We already know the truth about this bill.

    August 3, 2009 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  5. single mom

    Gee, and former President Clinton said it was all the Republicans fault! It looks like the Party of Tolerance only tolerates people who follow the party line completely. Mmm, I seem to remember a country that was like that. Wasn't it the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics?

    August 3, 2009 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  6. Peter

    Liberals are too aggressive, they're pushing away Moderates like Conservatives did. It'll cost Democrats as well!

    August 3, 2009 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
  7. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    Going against the majority of Americans who want a public option is like swimming against the tide. I see that egos in Washington are too big and some of you need to be taken off of your high horse.

    August 3, 2009 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  8. Larry

    Nelson has received $1.2 million from the insurance industry and $890,000 from the health care and pharmaceutical industries since he's been in congress (just since 2000).

    August 3, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  9. Cynthia

    Good I hope others do the same against the other undercover republicans who call themselves blue dems.

    August 3, 2009 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  10. demwit

    Those dirty blue dog democrats! Off with their heads!!

    August 3, 2009 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  11. aware

    "No" to government health care! I am an Independent who has lived with government health care, and believe me, it is a disaster! :(

    This administration doesn't know the meaning of truth. It runs on manipulation and obfuscation!

    August 3, 2009 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  12. TheProgressiveBigot

    There is no exception when it comes to government control! You either with us or against us!!

    August 3, 2009 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  13. Jehoy B

    Hey Ben, cashed that big insurance company donation check yet?

    August 3, 2009 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  14. Maggie

    One of the good elements of the Democrat Party is the political diversity within the party. This is not the case with the Republican Party.

    August 3, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  15. Cook dogg

    Thank You, Senator. you are an honorable man and it shows by the way the vile self-important special interest jackals in your party are attacking you. Don't back down, STAND UP FOR US. It is the very few like you that keep me an independent as opposed to a Republican.

    August 3, 2009 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  16. John G

    Dems turning on their own huh...must be some great legislation

    August 3, 2009 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  17. Bridgette

    Unless you have gone online and actually read this bill stop commenting on it. I don't understand how some of the Republicans say they haven't had time to read the bill and I have read it on line. It needs a little improvement here and there, but, until they read as well stop commenting on it.

    August 3, 2009 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  18. Alfred E. Neumann

    What, we can't have any objection or debate on healthcare reform?

    I like Ben Nelson and I vote.

    Who do far lefites support – Ted Kennedy celebrating his 40th year in office following the drowning of Mary Jo Kopechne.

    Far lefties, good for the Democratic party, bad for the country!

    August 3, 2009 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  19. paul coke

    Blue dogs, well dawg, get real and get off the lobbiest bus and realize that most small business don't even offer a living wage, let alone health care. The reality is Medicare is a government run health care program and it seems to work well to the point no seniors like their insurance benefits. The cost of health care can only go up, and insurance companies profit from the current programs. Dawgs change is tough, and so getting real is essential.

    August 3, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  20. Doug, New Jersey

    Woah, Nelson has a shred of decency, integrity, and cares about the American public, go get 'em libs, he has no place in the modern Democrat party.

    No lib should rest until old people are being denied life saving treatments, and those mean ol hicks in the middle of the country die waitng for operations they could easily get right now. ACORN should decide who lives and dies in America, that's being progressive!

    August 3, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  21. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA

    "Fear is the foundation of most governments; but it is so sordid and brutal a passion, and renders men in whose breasts it predominates so stupid and miserable, that Americans will not be likely to approve of any political institution which is founded on it." – John Adams

    Republicans need to read these words and apply them or they will cease to exist.

    August 3, 2009 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  22. Barack won the election, America loses big time.

    Thank God, a Democrat that still has some brain matter left, that doesn't want to ruin our healthcare system, bankrupt up and destroy our economy with huge tax increases and huge increases in the cost of having our country provide healthcare.

    Go Nelson Go. He must want to be re-elected. He is a smart dude. The other drones, have been drinking too much Obama Socialist Imperialist Kool-Aid.

    August 3, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  23. Michael

    Medical attention is a human right.
    We demand universal health care NOW.

    Canada can. So can Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Iceland, Finland, the UK, Germany, France, Mexico (!), Spain, Portugal, and pretty much every other country worth mentioning.

    And the USA cannot? Get real. Where is your national pride?

    This isn't about whether we are able to care for our sick. It is about whether some rich investor needs to make a bundle every time anyone gets medical attention. Taking profit out of the equation will be good for everyone except those investors.

    August 3, 2009 04:44 pm at 4:44 pm |
  24. Zack

    Tort Reform is a lie?

    Now that is funny. Stop confusing the cost of care and insurance companies. Malpractice premiums and defensive medicine are driving up the cost of care. The high cost are passed to the consumers.

    August 3, 2009 04:45 pm at 4:45 pm |
  25. Wake Up

    Fascist Left Wingers are scary! They already control the media, now they are going after someone in their own party that questions King Obama and the worst congress in history???

    Obamabots...Really? This is who you are...REally?

    August 3, 2009 04:47 pm at 4:47 pm |
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