Lawrence Lessig's Change Congress is going after Blue Dog Rep. Mike Ross (D-Ark.) for opposing a public health care option supported by his constituents while taking hundreds of thousands of dollars from the health care industry.
Not only does the ad urge Ross to vote for a public health care option, it challenges him to support publicly-funded elections so that he'll be less beholden to special interests in the future.
Narrated by Lessig, a Harvard law professor, the ad questions why Ross has fought against a government-run health care plan when a poll shows that 55% of people in his state support it. Ross, the ad notes, has taken $921,670 in campaign contributions from health insurers and the pharmaceutical industry since arriving in Congress.
After showing a clip of Ross lamenting his need to fundraise, the ad concludes, "Congressman, if you're so tired of raising money from special interests who oppose your constituents on issues like health care, then do something. Join the bipartisan bill to replace these corrupt special-interest-funded elections with citizen-funded elections and restore trust to Congress."
In an interview with National Journal in January, Lessig said, "After a while, more and more people begin to be convinced that, 'OK, my important issue is health care, my important issue is global warming. But I begin to see that until we solve this corruption issue, we're not going to get to solve these other issues at all.'"
Change Congress will be raising $15,000 online for an initial buy of 200 ads in Arkansas. Then the next $15,000 will buy 100 ads in DC. Additional money raised after that will go to more ads in Arkansas and DC.