Pro-Begich Ad Embraces Obamacare

Most of the Alaska Democrats’ colleagues have focused instead on fixing the law.

WASHINGTON, DC - OCTOBER 09: U.S. Sen. Mark Begich (D-AK) (R) speaks at a press conference highlighting how veterans are being impacted by the government shutdown with (L-R) Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT) and Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) at the U.S. Capitol October 9, 2013 in Washington, DC. During the event, Tester and others discussed how critical veterans services are being affected by the shutdown. 
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Andrea Drusch
April 10, 2014, 12:44 p.m.

A new TV ad from a super PAC that backs Democratic Sen. Mark Begich is taking an unusual approach toward Obamacare — it’s embracing it.

While fellow vulnerable Democrats up for reelection in 2014 highlight their attempts to remove unpopular portions of the law, a 30-second spot from the pro-Begich group Put Alaska First takes a page from the administration’s playbook and touts an individual success story.

The ad features Anchorage resident and breast cancer survivor Lisa Keller thanking Begich for taking on insurance companies and helping her receive treatment despite her preexisting condition.

“I was lucky. I beat cancer. But the insurance companies still denied me health insurance just because of a preexisting condition,” Keller says in the ad. “I now have health insurance again because of Mark Begich. Because he fought the insurance companies, so that we no longer have to.”

Republicans have mocked the advice of some top Democrats, like Democratic National Committee Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, that their party should run on Obamacare. In November, Wasserman Schultz said, “Democratic candidates will be able to run on Obamacare as an advantage leading into the 2014 election.”

So far, few incumbent Democrats are taking her up on that.

In New Hampshire, Sen. Jeanne Shaheen has touted her calls for the Obama administration to delay coverage fines in light of problems with the plan’s website, HealthCare.gov. In Louisiana, Sen. Mary Landrieu has run TV ads of her own telling voters she successfully fought the president to change unpopular provisions of the law. 

Correction: An earlier version of this story misstated where Sen. Jeanne Shaheen is from. She is a senator from New Hampshire.

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