Joe Biden campaign launches ‘flatline’ ad hitting Donald Trump over pledge to ‘terminate’ Obamacare

The re-election campaign for President Joe Biden is launching a new ad in battleground states attacking former President Donald Trump over his pledge to “terminate” the Affordable Care Act (ACA), which passed under Trump’s predecessor, Barack Obama, when Biden was Vice President.

The ad launches one day before the anniversary of the ACA becoming law.

Trump pledged during his presidency to overturn the ACA, which he and other critics refer to as Obamacare, but was unsuccessful in doing so, largely because Trump and Republicans in Congress didn’t have an alternative with which to replace it. And the ACA has gotten much more popular now than it was when Trump was in office, with about 59% of Americans favoring Obama’s signature health care law now, according to CNN.

This year, Trump is again vowing to undo the law, saying in Iowa earlier this year that “we’re going to fight for much better health care than Obamacare.”

He also posted a comment about the ACA on his social media platform, Truth Social.

“The cost of Obamacare is out of control, plus, it’s not good Healthcare. I’m seriously looking at alternatives,” Trump wrote, according to The Associated Press.

Now Biden’s campaign is using Trump’s pledge to drum up support for his re-election, or at least opposition to Trump.

The ad opens with the sound of a heart monitor, beeping along with the telltale P-waves shown when a person’s heart is being monitored.

Text appears on screen stating, “When he was president,” followed by Trump’s voice at various points.

“Obamacare is a disaster,” Trump can be heard saying in the first audio clip, before text on-screen then points out that Trump “tried to rip away our health care.”

The former President can then be heard saying, “what we’d like to do is totally kill it.”

“He failed, but he’s coming back for it,” the on-screen text then reads.

Trump’s voice continues with clips of him discussing repealing the ACA, as on-screen text cautions voters.

“He’ll take away health care from people with preexisting conditions,” it reads, referencing a provision of the ACA that prohibits health insurance companies from denying coverage based on preexisting conditions.

The spot adds that Trump would also take away health coverage from those with diabetes, asthma or who receive Medicaid, and from young adults. The ACA allowed young adults to stay on their parents’ health care until age 26, and it expanded Medicaid to cover more Americans, though a Supreme Court ruling made that provision optional and several red states have still not expanded Medicaid.

The ad also warns that Trump would take away free cancer screenings, another provision in the ACA, along with annual check-ups and birth control.

“If he succeeds,” the ad continues, “45 million Americans could lose their health insurance.

The ad ends with an ominous proposal: “You could be one of them.”

The beeping of the heart monitor then turns to a flatline.

The ad beckons voters to “protect your health care” and “stop Trump.”

Ahead of the ad launch Friday, Biden also offered a statement in response to Trump’s vow to undo the ACA.

“The Affordable Care Act is without a doubt, the most consequential piece of health care legislation in decades, providing millions of Americans with the freedom and security to live the life they want without the fear that one accident or illness will bankrupt them and their families,” wrote the President, who, as Vice President, infamously was overheard on a hot mic at the bill signing that it was a “big f***ing deal.”

His extended statement includes a renewed promise to “protect the Affordable Care Act from partisan attacks and build on it.” He also highlights his efforts to get “more people affordable health insurance,” and to lower prescription drug prices.

“Now more Americans have affordable health insurance than ever before, premiums are down, and enrollment is at an all-time high. We took on Big Pharma — and won, capping insulin at just $35 per month and out-of-pocket prescription costs at $2,000 per year for seniors,” Biden wrote.

“Trump wants to take us back to a time when health insurance companies could deny coverage to Americans with heart disease or diabetes or asthma. When you couldn’t leave a dead-end job because you couldn’t risk losing your health insurance. When a 22-year-old kid could be kicked off his parents’ plan because he graduated from college. When insurance companies could cut people off halfway through chemo because they’d reached the limit of what they were willing to pay. I won’t let that happen.”

Biden is not alone in using Trump’s ACA comments as a campaign talking point. Obama is also using the 14th anniversary of the landmark law to rally support on Saturday, with an organizing call with former House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to rally “around protecting the ACA from Trump’s attacks,” according to CNN.

 



Janelle Irwin Taylor has been a professional journalist covering local news and politics in Tampa Bay since 2003. In early 2022, she left the business to serve as Communications Director for St. Petersburg Mayor Ken Welch. After leaving the administration, Janelle briefly worked as a communications consultant for candidates, businesses and non-profits, before accepting her position as Publisher for Southeast Politics, a homecoming of sorts to her Florida Politics roots, where she served as a reporter and editor for several years. Janelle has also held roles covering the intersection of politics and business for the Tampa Bay Business Journal and general assignment news with an emphasis on social justice and climate change for WMNF Community Radio, where she also hosted a political call-in show under several names, including Last Call, Midpoint and The Scoop. Janelle has a lust for politics and policy. When she’s not bringing you the day’s news, you might find Janelle enjoying nature with her husband, children and two dogs. You can reach Janelle at [email protected]


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