A Democrat-affiliated group has turned the "let him die" incident during the CNN/Tea Party debate into an online ad campaign targeting eight Republican presidential candidates.
During the debate on Monday night, CNN’s Wolf Blitzer asked Congressman Ron Paul (R-TX) if society should just let a man die if he was in a coma and also did not have health care insurance.
The audience responded with shouts of "Yes!" and clapped in support of the idea.
The group Protect Your Care has made the incident into an online ad, available at www.LetHimDie.com, which will run on news sites in the early voting states Florida, Iowa and New Hampshire. The ad cycles through different candidate's names and asks people to sign a petition to get the Republican candidates to condemn the audience's reaction.
“This is not what our country stands for,” said Protect Your Care Communications Director Eddie Vale. “This extreme display of applauding for an uninsured person’s death would be expected for a gladiator in ancient Rome not from the audience in a Presidential debate as the Republican candidates all stand silently by.”
Protect Your Care will also be buying Google search term ads nationally, directing people to same page.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who participated in the debate, said he was "a bit taken aback" by the incident, adding that "the Republican party ought to be about life."
Given a chance to respond to the incident Wednesday on CNN, Ron Paul claimed that free market economies created better health care. He said that famines in Africa were a result of the lack of "free market systems."
Protect Your Care was formed by Democrats to work to block Republican efforts to repeal the Affordable Care Act.