Thursday, February 22, 2007

Spitzer Calls Healthcare Ads “Scare Tactics”

Liz Benjamin gives us her take on the Spitzer return fire........

Gov. Eliot Spitzer’s press office released a very lengthy statement from him in response to the Greater New York Hospital Association and SEIU/1199 ad campaign that began today - to the tune of what one insider said is roughly $1 million a week.
Spitzer called this effort “predictable” and accused the union and hospital association of wanting to maintain a “status quo that does not work for anyone but them.”
He also insisted that such “scare tactics” won’t change the fact that New York’s healthcare system is in need of reform - a point SEIU/1199 and the GNYHA actually don’t dispute.
Both Spitzer and the union/hospital alliance are laying claim to the mantle of putting “paitents first” - a phrase the governor employed when he laid out his Medicaid spending reduction plan that has since been adopted by the other side.
The governor made it clear he feels lawmakers, who have been asked by SEIU/1199 and the GNYHA for a pledge of support in this fight, ought to instead “keep the pledge they made to their constituents and pass a budget that provides high quality health care to New Yorkers at a price we can all afford.”
Spitzer invested his own money in palm cards that outline what he sees as the benefits of his budget proposal and has been traveling the state in hopes of generating public support (when he’s not bashing legislators for making ex-Assemblyman Tom DiNapoli the new state comptroller).
It’s unclear whether the governor will invest in his own ads to fight fire with fire in this case.

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