An alliance of MoveOn staffers and labor organizers will launch an advertising spot targeting Sen. Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) in an effort to push the senator to embrace a public healthcare option to compete with private insurance companies.
The ad, drawn up by the Progressive Change Campaign Committee, features a Nevada health care employee speaking poorly of health insurance companies and say she was to see if Reid is "strong and effective enough as a leader" to pass the public health option, a measure strongly backed by House liberals and labor groups.
"I'm your typical swing voter," Lee Slaughter, a Las Vegas health care professional who says her insurer denied her care to cover a broken hip.
"I voted for Republicans for president, and I voted for President Obama," Slaughter continues. "I also voted for Senator Harry Reid many times. But in 2010, I'll only be voting on one issue. I'm watching to see if Harry Reid is strong and effective enough as a leader to pass a public health insurance option into law. Here in Nevada the majority wants it.
"Senator Reid," she adds, "these insurance companies cannot be trusted with our lives. Nevadans want the choice of a public option."
Reid, the Democratic leader in the Senate, is charged with combining two competing versions of a Democrat-written healthcare overhaul. A version passed by the Senate Health and Labor Committee includes a public option; the bill passed by the Senate Finance Committee does not.
Reid has said he's interested in a bill that will be able to get by a Republican filibusters -- by coralling 60 votes; recent tabulations of Democratic senators' positions suggest that a public health option would torpedo chances for the bill's passage.
The ad first ran on The Huffington Post.