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Health Care Ads Running This Recess

Outside groups keep up the pressure on air and online

Nevada Sen. Dean Heller will continue to be the target of health care-related ads during recess. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Nevada Sen. Dean Heller will continue to be the target of health care-related ads during recess. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

The Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee is launching geo-targeted and candidate-specific Google search and display ads on the Republican health care bill over the July Fourth recess as part of an ongoing six-figure digital ad buy.

The holiday recess isn’t a typical time for expensive TV buys since many families go away or are spending time outdoors. But plenty of groups will be advertising over the congressional recess — mostly online, but some on TV — on the GOP health care proposal ahead of anticipated Senate action when Congress returns July 10. 

As Nevada Republican Dean Heller participates in a July Fourth parade in small-town Ely, targeted voters near the parade route (and others throughout the state) will be directed to a 30-second YouTube version of the DSCC’s previously released health care ad “The Price,” which ends with the words, “What will Senator Heller’s vote on health care cost you?” 

Voters in Arizona and Texas will see the same DSCC ad tailored to Sen. Jeff Flake and Sen. Ted Cruz, respectively.

In states where GOP governors or members of Congress are considering running for the Senate, voters will see a different six-second DSCC YouTube ad. Targets of those ads include Florida Gov. Rick Scott, North Dakota Rep. Kevin Cramer, Michigan Rep. Fred Upton, Indiana Reps. Todd Rokita and Luke Messer, Pennsylvania Reps. Lou Barletta and Mike Kelly, West Virginia Rep. Evan Jenkins and Missouri Reps. Vicky Hartzler and Ann Wagner

The DSCC ads target voters in the geographic proximity of parades — like attendees at the Point Pleasant Sternwheel Regatta in West Virginia, where Jenkins is scheduled to serve as grand marshal of Saturday’s parade. Voters looking up information about parade routes or candidates will see Google search ads that direct them to a website that plays “The Price.”

“We are joining voters in speaking out against the GOP’s expensive, unpopular and horrific proposals and in holding Republican Senate candidates accountable wherever they go,” DSCC spokesman David Bergstein said in a statement. 

The Progressive Change Campaign Committee went on the air in West Virginia on June 28 with a broadcast and cable TV ad, “Priscilla,” that urges viewers to tell their senators that “cutting Medicaid is immoral.” Beginning Saturday, the group is expanding into Texas, Arizona and Nevada, with the ad running through the recess. 

It’s running in the Austin and San Antonio, Texas, media markets, in the Phoenix media market, in the Las Vegas media market, and on Fox, MSNBC and CNN. 

The Progressive Change Campaign Committee is also extending its West Virginia buy, which initially ran in all five of the state’s media markets and in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area on cable news. Starting July 1, it will continue running in the Charleston media market and on cable. The group declined to specify how much it’s spending but said the buy will expand, in dates and location, based on its grass-roots fundraising. 

Planned Parenthood Action Fund is running TV ads in Arizona, Nevada and West Virginia over the recess on cable and broadcast. It declined to provide the size of the buy.

AARP Advocates is continuing to run a seven-figure ad campaign that urges viewers to tell their senators to “vote no on the health care bill.” Ads are running on TV, radio and social media in Ohio, Alaska, Nevada, West Virginia and Colorado. Social media ads only are running in Maine, Kansas and North Dakota. 

The AFL-CIO is continuing to run ads on YouTube and social media over the recess as part of a six-figure campaign that began on June 23 in Alaska, Maine, Nevada, Ohio and West Virginia. 

UltraViolet Action, the PAC for the women’s advocacy group, is launching ads on local newspaper homepages in West Virginia, Arizona and Maine between July 5 and 7 that highlight the number of people in each state that the group says would lose insurance under the GOP plan. 

The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee is running Facebook ads in four districts where GOP lawmakers voted for the health care bill in the House. The ads, backed by a five-figure investment, target Reps. Martha McSally of Arizona’s 2nd District, Rodney Frelinghuysen of New Jersey’s 11th District, Jeff Denham of California’s 10th District and David Valadao of California’s 21st District. 

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