Democrats in tight races in purple and red states are running away from President Obama and the Affordable Care Act, but U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz embraces both in a new television ad Tuesday in the Pennsylvania Democratic primary for governor.
"I worked with President Obama on the Affordable Care Act and getting health coverage to all Americans," Schwartz says in the spot "It was my legislation that said insurance companies can no longer deny coverage for kids with pre-existing conditions. It's something I'm proud of because it also closed the gap in prescription drug coverage for seniors.".
In the House, Schwartz wrote legislation barring insurance companies from denying coverage to children based on pre-existing conditions, and the idea was later incorporated into the ACA.
Made by Dixon/Davis media, the spot has footage of Schwartz speaking directly to the camera, and pictures of her with Obama. In it, Schwartz also attacks Gov. Corbett for refusing to take federal money for the expansion of Medicaid, which she says leaves 500,000 Pennsylvanians without any health-care coverage.
If she wins the nomination, Corbett and the Republicans may be able to turn the embrace of Obama and the health-care law against Schwartz, but the move seems likely to resonate with Democratic primary voters.
Schwartz has "turned her back on Pennsylvania for good," Mike Barley, Corbett's campaign manager, said in a statement. He cited cases of skyrocketing premiums and canceled policies in the problem-plagued rollout of the complicated program.
A Franklin & Marshall College poll in March showed that two-thirds of registered Democrats in Pennsylvania have a favorable view of the president. In the latest Gallup poll of the state last year, Obama had an overall favorability rating of 43. The president's popularity has been sagging across the nation.
Schwartz is in a four-way primary fight for the nomination to take on Corbett. She began the race as the frontrunner, but York businessman Tom Wolf surged ahead of the field on the strength of a massive TV advertising blitz funded in part by $10 million in personal funds.
Her rivals in the primary also support Obamacare, if occasionally criticizing its implementation. She is attempting to distinguish herself because she worked on the law.