Posted by Audiegrl
The Plum Line/Greg Sargent—As expected, Democrats are jumping on the news today that an on-air CNN commentator doubled as the insurance industry’s ad buyer, broadening the attack on the industry and linking it to the GOP, which also enlisted the help of that same commentator to craft anti-reform talking points.
DNC spokesman Hari Sevugan points out that the CNN commentator, GOP consultant Alex Castellanos, who placed a huge AHIP ad buy, also wrote a memo for the Republican National Committee advising Republicans to paint reform as a menacing government takeover that would destroy Medicare.
Dems argue that Castellanos’ work for AHIP and the GOP shows that they share the goal of killing reform — and that they are united in their determination to stop at nothing to make that happen.
“The news that Mr. Castellanos is a highly paid consultant for the Insurance Lobby sheds piercing light on the motivations of the Republican party in wholeheartedly adopting a strategy he authored to intentionally delay insurance reform in order to kill it,” Sevugan emailed me.
“Whether it’s paying for a supposedly independent report that was purposefully skewed to kill reform or paying hired hands to attack reform on tv while passing themselves off independent commentators, the insurance lobby and their agents in the GOP, have proven that they are willing to say and do anything — including misleading the American people — to protect their record profits,” Sevugan added. “They have zero credibility.”
More @ The Plum Line
CNN’s Frank Donatelli Problem: On-Air Contributor Revealed To Be Paid By GOP, Insurance Industry
“A network spokeswoman has confirmed that CNN will soon clarify the conflict of interest Castellanos has in regards to AHIP. However, CNN should note that he has been paid by the RNC, and if he is to continue opining on the health debate, disclosure should be made during every segment in which he appears. Indeed, the policy of full disclosure should extend to other CNN pundits, including Frank Donatelli, a GOP lobbyist who represents Blue Cross Blue Shield.“–Think Progress