New Toomey Ad: Republican Doctor All ‘Hell No’ About Sestak’s Healthcare Reform Vote

We like three things:

1) A guitar player who can palm mute from ‘scary’ to ‘hopeful’ within 30 seconds
2) A doctor who claims one candidate has “the best plan for healthcare” before an image of:
3) Said candidate reading what looks like The Bible

It’s our lucky election, because Pat Toomey’s latest ad gives us all three. Check it out:

Sorta damning, right? That doctor “tried to discuss safe and effective reform” with her congressman, Joe Sestak, but what’d he say? Sounds like Sestak’s response to this very concerned, objective doctor amounted to one big “fuck no.”

Unfortunately, there are more than three problems with this ad. We’ll start with the ad’s doctor:

1) Dr. DeMario, in the ad above, is a GOP activist.
2) She was mentioned in a 2008 Politico blog as having chilled with Ice Queen Sarah Palin at the Irish Pub during an Obama-McCain debate.
3) DeMario is the leader of Physicians for Corbett (Yeah, that’s Attorney General Corbett we’re talking about).
4) The Sestak campaign says it invited DeMario to three separate events. (Someone’s lying.)

The commercial’s claims are ridiculous (we’re going to check them out with Factcheck.org):

1) “Washington Healthcare Takeover”

From a FactCheck article concerning a similar ad back in 2009:

We’re not sure what exactly the League of American Voters would point to as evidence that the Democratic bills amount to a “takeover of your health care,” but, as we’ve said before, these bills do not propose a government-run or single-payer health care system, like those of many other countries. The House bill does contain a federal health plan (a.k.a. the “public option”), but the Congressional Budget Office estimated that only 6 million would join this insurance plan and that their premiums would be “somewhat higher” than private premiums sold through the insurance exchanges.

2) DeMario’s claim that new healthcare regulations will “put the government between patients and their doctors.”

This has been said over and over and we’re still not sure what it really means. Ronald Reagan, as the actor, said it about Medicare in the 1960s, he didn’t know what it meant then, but some have claimed this has something to do with the government being involved in doctor-patient end of life “death panel” talks. So we’ll go with that.

These six claims are a twisted interpretation of a provision in the bill that says Medicare will cover voluntary counseling sessions between seniors and their doctors to discuss end-of-life care. Medicare doesn’t pay for such sessions now; it would under the bill. End-of-life care discussions include talking about a living will, hospice care, designating a health care proxy and making decisions on what care you want to receive at the end of your life. Doctors do the consulting, not the “government” or a “bureaucracy.” The e-mail author’s assertion that the bill calls for “an ORDER from the GOVERNMENT” for end-of-life plans rests on language about a patient drawing up such an order stipulating their wishes, and having that order signed by a physician. There’s nothing about “an order from the government.” The bill defines an order for life-sustaining treatment as a document that “is signed and dated by a physician …[and] effectively communicates the individual’s preferences regarding life sustaining treatment.” See our article “False Euthanasia Claims” for more on such assertions.

3) “Pat Toomey has the best plan for health care.”

Fair enough, but while he was in congress, Toomey received a 25 percent favorable rating from the American Public Health Association. And if we’re to equate Toomey’s healthcare plan as something to do with the Bible, as the end of the commercial perhaps implies, then, ahem, may God help us all.

2 Responses to “ New Toomey Ad: Republican Doctor All ‘Hell No’ About Sestak’s Healthcare Reform Vote ”

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