WASHINGTON (CNN) – A new multi-million national television campaign launches this week that is designed to pressure Congress to enact healthcare reform, organizers tell CNN.
Families USA and The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) are paying to air three new 30-second ads in the coming weeks on CNN, Fox News Channel and MSNBC. Dave Lemmon, a spokesman for Families USA, described the ad buy as a “multi-million, multi-week” effort to convince lawmakers to listen to President Obama’s call to Congress to deliver a healthcare reform bill to his desk by October.
In the first six months of this year, more than $22 million has been spent on healthcare reform commercials, according to an analysis conducted by Campaign Media Analysis Group, CNN's consultant on political television advertising.
The commercials feature people discussing how the rising cost of healthcare has affected them personally. Public polling shows that healthcare reform is a major concern for Americans.
"More and more families are being priced out of the health care they used to take for granted,” said Ron Pollack, executive director of Families USA. “This ad campaign, involving real people, shows that there will be a huge cost to America's families and businesses if we fail to achieve meaningful health care reform this year."
The CMAG analysis estimates that supporters of President Obama's approach to health care reform are outspending opponents on the air by a margin of greater than 2-to-1 in 2009. Families USA and PhRMA are considered supporters of Obama’s call for healthcare reform.