September 28th, 2009
02:09 PM ET
13 years ago

Baucus targeted by liberal groups in new ad

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption="Baucus is facing fire from liberal groups in a new ad."](CNN) - Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Montana, is facing heightened criticism from members of the liberal wing of the Democratic Party over his panel's health reform bill that lacks the so called "public option" for health insurance.

In a new 60 second commercial that begins running Tuesday in Baucus' home state and in Washington, D.C., Montana farmer Bing Perrine urges Baucus to support a public option - something the senator has ruled out in a bid to gain bipartisan support for the measure. Perrine said that he faces more than $100,000 in medical bills because of heart problems.

The ad is being paid for by the two liberal advocacy organizations: Progressive Change Committee and Democracy for America.

The Montana Democrat has instead backed more limited health cooperatives, a move that so far has failed to attract any firm GOP support and has angered some members of his own party. Democratic Sens. Chuck Schumer of New York and Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia have introduced an amendment to Baucus' bill that would add a public option. The amendment will be voted on as early as Tuesday in the Finance committee.

"Senator Baucus, when you take millions of dollars from health and insurance interests that oppose reform, and oppose giving families like mine the choice of a public option, I have to ask: 'Whose side are you on?'" Perrine, said in the new ad.

Progressive Change Committee and Democracy for America said they will initially spend $50,000 on the ad and hope to raise an additional $50,000 to keep it on the air.

Full Script after the jump:

BING: My name is Bing Perrine and I live here in Billings, Montana, with my beautiful wife and baby boy. Last June, I collapsed because of congenital heart problems. I need open-heart surgery, but I have no insurance and no company will insure me.

My friends and family have been a blessing. With hearts as big as a Montana sky, they have helped with bake sales and benefits. But my wife and I still owe over $100,000 in medical bills.

None of this debt would have piled up if I had the option of buying into a public health insurance plan.

Private insurance companies need competition. They profit by denying care to people like me.

Senator Baucus, when you take millions of dollars from health and insurance interests that oppose reform - and oppose giving families like mine the choice of a public option - I have to ask: whose side are you on?

Filed under: Health care • Max Baucus • Popular Posts
soundoff (254 Responses)
  1. Cynthia

    Baucus is a sell out. even though the party of no is not going along with anything put out there, baycys still submit a bill with no public option, who are you trying to impress? The GOP are a bunch of ignorant racist and no matter what is bought before this group of narrow minded clowns it its not there way then they shoot it down. baucus bill is a joke and he can keep it.

    chris your comment "you are going to seek medical treatment for any little thing" goes to show how narrow minded and uneducated you are about the public option. clown.

    September 28, 2009 12:51 pm at 12:51 pm |
  2. Laura in KS

    The idea that everyone who receives govt assistance is a worthless, lazy, freeloader is one of the most ignorant and un-Christian things I have ever heard. My mother had no choice but to take govt aid when my father died unexpectedly. She worked multiple jobs, but it just wasn't enough to provide my sister and I. So I don't want to hear any moron who has never truly been in need of aid complaining about how we're becoming a "welfare state" It's our God-given duty to take care of our fellow men. Did you learn nothing from the Bible??

    September 28, 2009 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  3. OldUncleTom

    To paraphrase a former President...

    "Insurance does not solve problems... Insurance IS the problem.

    The private sector has had over 60 years to demonstrate its mythical efficiency. We are not having this conversation to celebrate its success in that endeavor.

    September 28, 2009 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  4. Mike in MN

    Obama and the Democrats are a joke on the public option issue.
    The Democrats are obstructing health care reform because they can't generate enough votes in their party to pass reform with or without a public option. And Obama is no help, he just makes it worse. He votes present on the issue. He says he supports a public option which encourages the liberals and so they hold their ground and say they will not vote for a bill without a public option. Then Obama says the public option is not essential and so the Blue Dogs hear Obama saying he will give up the public option and they hold their ground to not vote for a bill with one. Good job Democrats, way to govern.

    September 28, 2009 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  5. Kevin

    What do we want? A PUBLIC OPTION!! When do we want it? RIGHT NOW!! WHAT Happens if we dont get it? We vote every incumbent Republican and Democrat out of office in 2010!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    September 28, 2009 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |

    Thank you both, the Progressive Change Committee and Democracy for America!

    Thanks also to Actblue for their ad telling Arkansas Sen. Blanche Lincoln and Rep. Mike Ross to stop doing the bidding of the insurance industry by blocking the public health insurance option.

    And, of course, thanks are owed to Health Care for America NOW!

    September 28, 2009 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  7. Jimmy

    The MAJORITY Of Americans do NOT want the public option. Less than 50% support it.

    September 28, 2009 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  8. ?everything

    I love the example of paying .44 for the public option/$15 for the private option!!...what a joke...I bet the private option arrived first..was able to be tracked..and you could "see" who received....the public option is still sitting somewhere waiting....waiting...and waiting to be delivered with no way to track etc.....People make the comment that we already have public options...and we do....medicare is under water and drowning...with untold billions of estimated payouts for healthcare for those of us baby boomers hoping to retire...and we all know what a joke medicaid is...and social security....can you tell me where the money is we have paid into it???....nothing but IOU's sitting give me a break...the "public option" would be another debacle...and don't get me started on the VA and don't don't what you are talking about if you haven't dealt with please....NO PUBLIC OPTION>> true reform is needed not another program.....!!!!!

    September 28, 2009 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  9. Pam

    If we do not get a new public option, then the earnings limits for Medicaid eligibility must be raised so that those families who cannot afford insurance can qualify for Medicaid.

    Healthcare is a right – not a privilege!
    The GOP does not agree as it goes against the Republican edict of keeping that separation between the 'haves' and the 'haves not'.

    September 28, 2009 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  10. Question

    Why is it that we trust our Education, Library Services, Fire Protection, Postal service, Public Safety, National Safety and Health Care for all those services to the government, and yet we do not trust our government to help THE PEOPLE with a public option for health care?

    By this logic shouldn't we be living in a burning mire of stupidity that is consistently sick and forever being attacked by other nations?

    What is the use of educating and protecting a society that can not agree that the best thing for the society is that everyone is well, that the best way for a capitalistic society to flourish is to have people alive and well putting MONEY back into the system. People going bankrupt because they can not pay their medical bills is NOT good for the system…because that just creates more deficit. Wouldn’t it be better for EVERYONE to be paying into the kitty and having that kitty actually generating money? Wouldn’t it be better for the insurance companies to NOT have to pay out premiums due to the fact that everyone is well?

    What are we so afraid of? Perhaps this is the selfish people in this country's version of natural selection. Has evolution just become a matter of wealth and greed?

    September 28, 2009 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  11. Rick McDaniel

    There's too many people in this country, with their hand out. Most of those, do little to support themselves. I am tired of supporting them, on my own meager income level, so I want insurance, by dang, PAY FOR IT!

    September 28, 2009 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  12. VCC

    If there was a public option to have heathcare coverage more people would carry insurance. Why is it socialist for us to have a government option, when Medicaid and Medicare are both government run health care for the poor and old. Wake up America, the profit needs to be taken out of healthcare because it is a necessity for all who lives.

    September 28, 2009 12:59 pm at 12:59 pm |
  13. Michael K, Baltimore MD

    So, if I don't need public option insurance, I should oppose it for you because I got mine and you can got hell?

    I wonder what the religious party is advocating?

    September 28, 2009 01:00 pm at 1:00 pm |
  14. Bed time for Raygun

    How fast the "Right" is to put down Unions for working Americans,but quick to defend the Corporate crooks running health care.I smell a vested interest from the crooks posting today,could it be you work for them?

    September 28, 2009 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  15. Canadian

    Insurance companies are sucking the life out of the American families,... an American fellow from Buffalo, was fishing in Canada, had to go to a Canadian hospital in an emergency, spent 3 days cost him $1800.00 CND., ..Returned to Buffalo spent 3 days in an American hospital, got billed for$24,000.00,.. that's how you bankrupt a family, under your present system,... the public option is the only way to go you dummies.

    September 28, 2009 01:01 pm at 1:01 pm |
  16. Chris - MN

    Why compare healthcare to the automotive industry? How many people die each year from not being able to buy a car? I haven't had one for 6 years and use (wait for it) public transportation! When I have a situation that requires a car I rent one or I borrow one. You can't do that with health insurance. If you can't afford health insurance or get dropped for being expensive, you will likely never have the option to buy it ever again.

    Reforming the insurance industry sounds like a solution but think of it this way. They have billions of dollars of incentives to hire lawyers and find any loophole in the system. That's what they've been doing for 60 years and only a fool would think they won't continue.

    September 28, 2009 01:02 pm at 1:02 pm |
  17. Mike in MN

    A public option will just be another money pit like Social Security and Medicare. There are better ways to increase competition like letting the hundreds of insurance companies compete accross state lines. This would actually be more competition than adding 1 more choice.
    A pubic option is certain to add to the deficits. It is clear that Liberal Democrats don't have a clue what to do about the deficits or for that matter really care about them. The only Democrats that really care about our nations future are the Blue Dogs who want to be responsible about spending, care about the deficits, and want health care reform that will increase protecitons for those already covered, get everyone else covered and bring down costs. By far the best way to go for everyones good is without the public option.

    September 28, 2009 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  18. Pragmatic

    The Bauchus Bill is a rough draft – a starting point for discussion and hammering out the details ... rational people know its not the final bill – sensible people are speaking to their elected officials on what matters to them ... its called democracy ... ain't neat or pretty but its still the best system available.

    September 28, 2009 01:03 pm at 1:03 pm |
  19. katiec

    The ad is totally correct. Baucus has received over $4 MILLION in donations from health care entities.
    Health Care Reform without Public Option will be a farce. It is the only plan that will make insurance companies become competitive, accountable, stop the raping of the American people and perhaps bring back some integrity to the health related businesses.
    Public Option is the only option that truly benefits middle class, less fortunate, senior citizens and disabled.
    We will no longer allow or tolerate big business, lobbyists, special interests or those who support them continue to run, control our country and make crucial decisions on our behalf. Just look at
    what this has done to our country these last eight years.
    Please contact every politician you can, or and demand they represent the
    American people by supporting Public Option.

    September 28, 2009 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  20. John

    The governement can run medicare, social security, cash for clunkers, fannie mae & freddie mac, & several other programs & some of you people want them to run healthcare. Please note the following:

    Doing the same things & expecting the results to be different is INSANITY!!!!

    September 28, 2009 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  21. John

    The governement can't run medicare, social security, cash for clunkers, fannie mae & freddie mac, & several other programs & some of you people want them to run healthcare. Please note the following:

    Doing the same things & expecting the results to be different is INSANITY!!!!

    September 28, 2009 01:05 pm at 1:05 pm |
  22. vic bullard

    Vote against anyone that votes against the Public Health Plan..if they aren't Republicans..then they are weak kneed democrats that are too frightened of the Republicans to vote the way the people elected them to. Your names will be taken.

    September 28, 2009 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  23. Sniffit

    "How is it that "no public option" equals monopoly?"

    Antitrust laws do not apply to the insurance industry. Look it up.

    September 28, 2009 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  24. Ron , West Coast

    I also have a heart condition, and I`m also more than $100,000 dollars in debt . We need to have a more leval playing field , we need the public option , we need to have the means to keep the health insurance insdustry honest ...... Max Baucus , we know you recieve a lot of money from the health insurance lobby, but you also recieve a fat salary , and an excellent medical package from taxpayers like me , who don`t have any medical insurance . So , stop acting like scum , and do the right thing , for the people of America , WE WANT AND NEED TO HAVE THE PUBLIC OPTION .........

    September 28, 2009 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  25. yuri

    And we thought he is one among the Dems. How Dumb!
    The liberals and the barbaric right wingers ought to tone down the rhetoric and give it a rest.

    September 28, 2009 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
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