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Insurance Industry's Ad Supports Health Reform

The health insurance industry released a television advertisement today that expresses support for bipartisan health care reform and the expansion of insurance coverage.

Released by America's Health Insurance Plans, which represents 1,300 member companies, the 30 second spot supports reform that makes pre-existing conditions "a thing of the past."

"Illness doesn't care where you live, or if you're already sick, or if you lose your job," the ad states. "Your health insurance shouldn't either."

The advertisement paints a sharp contrast with the Health Insurance Association of America's "Harry and Louise" ads of the early 1990s, which helped sink support of President Clinton's health care plan.

Instead of directly addressing the insurance industry's opposition to a public option, the ad poses insurance companies as an ally of health reform and shows support for extending the health and financial security insurance provides to all Americans.

"If everyone's covered, we can make health care as affordable as possible," the ad states.

While the ad endorses key policy reforms such as new market rules and consumer protection, the insurance companies still oppose the Obama administrations proposed government health care plan that would compete with the private insurers.

A statement released by AHIP says that the reform highlighted by the ad provides "a workable framework on which policymakers can build without creating a government run plan that would disrupt the quality coverage Americans currently have and want to keep."

In addition to this commercial, the Republican National Committee has released an aggressive advertisement against President Obama's health plan, calling it a "risky experiment."

RNC Chairman Michael Steele said Monday that he believes the president's health plan to be "socialism."

The health insurance industry ad, entitled "Illness", will air in the districts of at least ten moderate democratic lawmakers, according to Politico.

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