October 7th, 2009
06:45 AM ET
5 years ago

First on the Ticker: Obama enlists Hollywood in new ad

President Obama is turning to a handful of Hollywood stars to judge a contest that asks grassroots supporters to create a television commercial promoting health care reform.
President Obama is turning to a handful of Hollywood stars to judge a contest that asks grassroots supporters to create a television commercial promoting health care reform.

WASHINGTON (CNN) – President Obama is turning to a handful of Hollywood stars to judge a contest that asks grassroots supporters to create a television commercial promoting health care reform.

Musician Will.I.Am, actor John Cho, actress Rosario Dawson, actor Dulé Hill, "Family Guy" creator Seth MacFarlane, actor Brandon Routh, actress Kate Walsh and actress Olivia Wilde will join Democratic National Committee Chairman Tim Kaine, DNC Executive Director Jen O'Malley Dillon, Rep. Patrick Murphy of Pennsylvania, Obama campaign manager David Plouffe and volunteers in helping to pick the 30-second commercial that will air nationally, a DNC official tells CNN.

The contest is being run by Obama's political arm – Organizing for America – which is housed at DNC headquarters in Washington, DC. It is the latest effort by the president's political team to try and enlist the grassroots to help pressure Congress to pass health care reform this year.

"We know that compelling videos can touch people in a way that words alone simply cannot," Natalie Foster, OFA's new media director, said in an e-mail announcing the contest last week. "The messages that regular people put together will make a bigger difference than any false smears or slick ads the other side can dream up. And who knows - your creative, powerful, or touching video could help tip the balance in favor of health reform."

OFA will officially announce the names of the judges late Wednesday morning. The contest ends October 18.

Follow Mark Preston on Twitter: @prestoncnn


Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (135 Responses)
  1. Drusilla Barron

    Poor, poor Obama. I really feel so sorry for him. He's so busy doing all this ephemeral stuff, he has no time to do his job. If he honestly thinks this fluff is his job, he's really deluded. I do feel so badly for him.

    October 7, 2009 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  2. Randolph Carter, the real enemy of humanity

    Health care ad you say? What they need is an iconic mascot like Smokey Bear or that crying Indian from the 70's. How about a cute lil' cartoon syringe named McNeedley? He could be standing by a hospital bed where somebody's gramma is dying because her insurance company denied her treatment. He could harangue us in a squeaky cartoon voice for dropping the ball on real healthcare reform. A naughty nurse might work too. Have a nice day!

    October 7, 2009 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  3. TM in Co

    Let's all face it. We the people don't have a say in anything. Yeah, we elect people to represent us, but they can vote any way they choose to vote once they get there............The Congressman from my district has proven that over and over and over again and he has only been in office since January...............................

    October 7, 2009 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  4. JS007

    At some point Obama will have to start calling out the corrupt Senators who have sold their souls to the insurance industry by name.

    October 7, 2009 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  5. Proud Member..Party of No

    That's quite a sterling cast......I've never heard of any of them.

    October 7, 2009 11:32 am at 11:32 am |
  6. single mom

    You have got to be kidding me!
    Please. Someone tell me this is an April Fool's joke months early.

    October 7, 2009 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  7. Krejaton

    Yet another chapter in the on-going saga of our Campaigner-in-Chief, this time enlisting his Hollywood elite to provide the propaganda for the DNC.

    October 7, 2009 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
  8. j russ

    we can't trust the government so now we should trust a bunch of actors?

    October 7, 2009 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  9. LIP

    The very last thing the American public needs is a bunch of Hollywood "actors" telling us what we should or shouldn't do, especially when it c omes to health care reform.
    Let's remember that these aren't real people. These are people that are always pretending to be something they are not, which gives them no credibility.

    October 7, 2009 11:46 am at 11:46 am |
  10. Keith in Austin

    -nstead of "oranizing America" among Hollywood's liberal elite, Bozo might want to visit the Heartland of America! These are the folks that are wising up to his true colors and dropping their support
    Of his illgotten agenda in droves.

    October 7, 2009 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
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