KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Third-Party Groups To Target Health Law With New Wave Of Attack Ads

Also in the news, the Supreme Court -- especially after the recent health law decision -- is an effective tool to rally fundraising among both Democrats and Republicans. Meanwhile, a defense policy expert suggests presidential candidates focus on long-term military mental health issues. Finally, The Wall Street Journal examines how health care is playing in the Montana Senate race, where candidates are sparring over who is soft on cancer.

The Washington Post: Third-Party Groups Ready Multiple Ads Attacking Health Care Law
Conservative groups are gearing up to spend millions of dollars over the next three months on ads attacking President Obama's health care law and Democrats who support it, but in many cases voters will have no way of knowing who paid for the barrage. The ads amount to the next wave of opposition to Obama's health care plan, which was upheld by the Supreme Court last month as constitutional under the federal government's taxing authority. Some of the groups most active on the issue have received funding from health-care firms opposed to parts of the legislation (Eggen, 7/20).

Politico: Election Of Supreme Importance To Court's Future
President Barack Obama lost a potential campaign attack line when the Supreme Court upheld his health care law. But the nation's highest court still serves as one of Obama's best tools for raising money and waking up his base. And as Mitt Romney is discovering, invoking the Supreme Court can fire up conservatives, too (Samuelsohn and Gerstein, 7/22).

CBS News: In Nevada, Obama Makes Play For Veteran Support
The Brookings Institute's Michael O'Hanlon, who specializes in national security and defense policy, argues that both Romney and Mr. Obama can earn support from former service members by presenting bold ideas at the VFW conference and demonstrating a real understanding of issues relevant to the community. … O'Hanlon suggested that both candidates would do well to present a plan for addressing long-term mental health issues among military veterans (Madison, 7/23).

The Wall Street Journal: The Cancer Card And A Fighter In Florida
The tough battle for a U.S. Senate seat for Montana has reached the point where the candidates are battling over who is soft on cancer -- and featuring dueling cancer survivors in their television ads. Incumbent Democrat Jon Tester aired an ad on July 10 criticizing Rep. Dennis Rehberg, his Republican challenger, for voting to defund Title X of the Public Health Service Act, which funds family-planning services for low-income women. ... The Rehberg campaign, which launched a rebuttal ad this week, says the congressman didn't vote to eliminate breast-cancer screening. It shows an elderly woman who has had breast and thyroid cancer saying, "Denny has a good heart and understands what cancer does to everyone it touches." At the end of the ad, viewers find out the woman is Mr. Rehberg's mother  (Bendavid, 7/21).

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