WASHINGTON (CNN) - The Republican National Committee will target a
handful of centrist Democrats on Monday with a new Web video and series of
conference calls criticizing the Democrats for voting to allow debate to begin
on health care reform.
The 60-second video, which will be e-mailed to more than 5 million
people, singles out Sens. Evan Bayh of Indiana, Byron Dorgan of North Dakota,
Mary Landrieu of Louisiana, Blanche Lincoln of Arkansas and Ben Nelson of
Nebraska, as well as Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada, according to
an advance copy of the video provided to CNN.
"Rolled by pressure from Barack Obama and Harry Reid, they voted to move
forward a government-run health care bill our nation does not want and can't
afford," an announcer says before ticking off criticism of each lawmaker.
Reid persuaded all 58 Democrats and the two independent senators who
align themselves with the Democrats to vote Saturday evening in favor of
allowing debate on the Democratic health care bill to move forward.
"On Saturday night, a number of moderate Senate Democrats sacrificed
their principles to bring America dangerously closer to government-run health
care." RNC Chairman Michael Steele said in a statement received by CNN that
will be released Monday. "Ben Nelson sold out his conscience and voted in favor
of federally funded abortions. Blanche Lincoln sold out her principles by
voting in favor of a government-run insurance plan, something she previously
said she opposed. And Mary Landrieu simply sold her vote to the highest bidder
after Harry Reid added a $300 million earmark just for Louisiana. Voters
elected these senators to represent their best interests. Instead they voted in
the dead of night for a health care experiment that will increase taxes, raise
premiums, cut Medicare, and use taxpayer dollars to fund abortion. This is not
the representation Americans deserve. It's time for these senators to take a
long hard look in the mirror and ask themselves who they really work for -
their constituents or liberal Democrats like Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi."
With senators returning home for the Thanksgiving recess, GOP officials
in Arkansas, Louisiana, Nebraska and Pennsylvania also will hold conference
calls with state and national reporters to echo Steele's criticism.