BERN NOTICE: Biden's Super PAC Is Led By Health Care Lobbyists
Coincidence? You be the judge.
|David Sirota||Oct 31, 2019|| 62|
Bern Notice is a production of the Bernie 2020 campaign. Please forward this on to your friends and tell them to subscribe. The views expressed here are solely of the bylined author.
On Wednesday, Joe Biden attacked Bernie for supporting Medicare for All. That same day, we learned that the super PAC bankrolling Biden’s campaign is led by health care industry lobbyists.
Coincidence? You be the judge.
The Intercept and Sludge report that the super PAC’s treasurer is a former Biden aide who is now the CEO of a lobbying firm that has represented health care systems, medical device companies and the pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly. The lobbying firm notes on its website that “our past and current clients include hospital systems, insurers, medical device companies and advocacy organizations.” The super PAC’s board also includes a lobbyist for the hospital industry.
On the same day that the super PAC launched pro-Biden ads, Biden’s campaign lashed out at Bernie for supporting a Medicare for All system that would reduce the profits of the super PAC leaders’ health care industry clients. Amid weak grassroots fundraising, Biden’s campaign abruptly reversed its opposition to super PACs, effectively green lighting the new super PAC, which can rake in unlimited corporate and billionaire donations.
In response to the attacks, Bernie 2020 campaign manager Faiz Shakir said this:
"At the same time we are learning that Joe Biden has a Super PAC to bankroll his campaign with unlimited donations from corporations and billionaires, he is once again peddling dishonest insurance company talking points about Medicare for All. Biden’s proposal preserves the corporate greed and corruption that rots our health care system, and his plan leaves millions of Americans uninsured.
"When we eliminate premiums, co-payments, deductibles and out-of-pocket expenses, the overwhelming majority of people will pay less for better health care.
"Will Joe Biden tell the American people how many more of them he’s willing to allow to go bankrupt? How many more people would die because they don’t get to a doctor in time? We need to have the guts to stand up to corporate greed. That’s what this election is about."
At this point, Biden’s allegiance to health insurers and drug companies is not exactly a surprise.
Biden launched his presidential campaign with a fundraiser hosted by the CEO of a private health insurance company. The American Prospect has also noted that “Steve Ricchetti, referred to as Biden's campaign chairman in a published report last month, was a longtime lobbyist for health care and other corporate clients.”
As Vox put it: “The health care industry is betting on Joe Biden in its war against Medicare-for-all.”
Bern after reading,
P.S. Happy Halloween — hope you have found a good costume. 20 years ago today, I was Bernie for Halloween — I may pull out this costume again tonight, only this time I don’t need a wig for gray hair.