21 July 2009

Um, whose side are you on?

Fascinating ad from AHIP, America's Health Insurance Plans:

Did you watch it?  Notice anything interesting?  It sounds like an endorsement of ObamaCare: "if you lose you job," ... "if everyone is covered, we can make health care as affordable as possible," ... "the words 'pre-existing condition' become a thing of the past," cool.

The tagline is a dog-whistle to the political class, though: "Supporting Bipartisan Reforms that Congress can build on." Hmmm, "bipartisan" ... what could they mean by that?  Essentially, to the political types, this is a plea: "please don't include a public insurance option," while presenting a public face being pro-reform.

I'm not sure why they would do this, though.  From the consumer perspective, most people who see this ad will be more and not less likely to support reform, and would certainly not be calling up their centrist legislator to inveigh against a public option.  And the politicoes don't really care about ads anyway.  I think this ad actually helps Obama more than it hurts him.  And it's a sign that the prospects for reform are good when the best argument AHIP can publically make is a weak plea for bipartisanship.

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