TV ads hit Rep. Poliquin on Medicare privatization vote

New television ads airing in Maine are criticizing Second-District Republican Congressman Bruce Poliquin for voting to “end the Medicare guarantee” in favor of higher profits for insurance and drug companies.

The ads refer to a vote Poliquin took in favor of the GOP budget plan in March of last year. At the time, Poliquin said he was “excited” to cast the vote, but advocates for seniors and for access to health care roundly criticized the legislation.

“The House GOP’s budget would privatize Medicare with a voucher plan, leaving seniors and the disabled – some of our most vulnerable Americans – hostage to the whims of private insurance companies,” said National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare President Max Richtman. “Over time, this will end traditional Medicare and make it harder for seniors to choose their own doctor.”

End Citizen’s United, a PAC focused on reforming the nation’s campaign finance system, is spending $200,000 to air the ads in the Bangor and Portland media markets. They’re backing Poliquin’s Democratic opponent, Emily Cain.

“Emily Cain has distinguished herself as a tireless and effective leader for small businesses, students, victims of domestic violence, and working families. She’s fought to level the playing field by pushing for campaign finance reforms like increased disclosure so billionaires and corporate special interests can’t drown out the voices of middle class Mainers,” Tiffany Muller, End Citizens United Executive Director, said in a release earlier this month. “She’ll continue that work in Congress, where Bruce Poliquin has stood with the Koch Brothers and helped corporate special interests rig the system for their own benefit.”

Poliquin has asked Maine TV stations to stop airing the ads, but they have refused, citing FEC regulations on censorship of political advertising.

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