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American health insurers are dwarfing the Koch brothers' Americans for Prosperity when it comes to advertising on Obamacare.
Companies such as Cigna and Kaiser Permanente poured about $40 million into television ads specifically related to Obamacare between Dec. 1 and Feb. 8, according to ad tracking firm Kantar Media. That is far more than AFP, which as of last week had dropped about $27 million on ads since August attacking politicians who supported the program.
Obviously the aims of the advertising are completely different. The Kochs are primarily focusing in states where there are Senate Democrats running for re-election and insurance companies are competing for new customers.

But it's a whole new world now, and that's what the massive spending by insurance companies shows. The Kochs now have to compete with an established law that is providing great benefits to a lot of people. Attacking the law now means threatening to take people's health insurance away. And as more and more people realize that the law isn't really doing anything to change their lives, they're going to wonder what all this fuss is about. Then all but the most rabid Republicans are going to just tune out.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Tip Jar (39+ / 0-)

    "The NSA’s capability at any time could be turned around on the American people, and no American would have any privacy left, such is the capability to monitor everything. [...] There would be no place to hide."--Frank Church

    by Joan McCarter on Tue Feb 11, 2014 at 01:50:09 PM PST

  •  Maybe some day, Charles and David Koch... (11+ / 0-)

    ...will learn to leave well enough alone.

    Unfortunately, that may be a little too late for them...

    Float like a manhole cover, sting like a sash weight! Clean Coal Is A Clinker!

    by JeffW on Tue Feb 11, 2014 at 01:57:45 PM PST

  •  I'll pay... (6+ / 0-)

    When I win the billion from Buffett (and also quite possibly the Powerball) I am going to start a Big Ass PAC and spend spend spend it all exposing the Kochs and the fucking hazard to all right thinking people they are.

    Is that a real poncho, or is that a Sears' poncho? - Frank Zappa

    by JoesGarage on Tue Feb 11, 2014 at 02:01:06 PM PST

  •  Here in New Mexico (10+ / 0-)

    there has been quite a bit of advertising by the state exchange as well as BCBS and some other local insurers.  I've been very pleased to see it.

    If you acknowledge it, you can change it.

    by Raggedy Ann on Tue Feb 11, 2014 at 02:01:20 PM PST

  •  Also the timing is against them (11+ / 0-)


    Their campaigns are aimed at politicians who they hope will either change their mind and work harder to eviscerate the law (which they can't do with the current balance of power) or become so weakened as to be replaced by another politician that can.

    This will, or more likely won't, play out over time: months, years, election cycles, congressional sessions, etc.  And will take the collective will of THOUSANDS if not MILLIONS (in the case of the 2016 POTUS election)

    Meanwhile the insurance ads play directly to the individuals.  They are selling something NOW.  They are incented to act QUICKLY: something measured in days or even hours and hinges on the self-interested act of a single person.  They just need to convince people that need insurance, one person at a time, to pick up the phone or go to their website.

    The insurance companies are unstoppable on this front and the March 31 deadline will accelerate their victory.  

    Every day Obamacare becomes more entrenched.  I love saying that to my RW nutbag friends.  If it looks like it hits a nerve I go further to reference their children "Katie's (their daughter) grandchildren will die of OLD AGE and still be on Obamacare!"  ....LOL.. oh, the look on their faces.  

    So fun to enrage a tea bagger... ah well, everyone has to have a hobby.

    Красота спасет мир --F. Dostoevsky

    by Wisper on Tue Feb 11, 2014 at 02:08:32 PM PST

  •  Some are having it both ways (0+ / 0-)

    Example: Aon Hewitt, which has various Koch Bros-related entities on its client list, while also drumming up business on how great the ACA is and how AH can manage benefits programs.  Going for the double-dip / win-win, it seems.

  •  Live by the short term (0+ / 0-)

    Die in the long run.

  •  Wait... (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    wildcat6, DougInNYC, WheninRome, tubaguy

    Wat, I'm supposed to be happy to see insurance companies pouring money into advertising?

    That's the Bizarro-World that corporate liberalism creates.

    •  $40 million is probably not that much (1+ / 0-)

      compared to how much insurance companies spent in 2009 - 2010 trying to kill the effort.

      "The modern conservative is engaged in one of man's oldest exercises in moral philosophy; that is, the search for a superior moral justification for selfishness." - John Kenneth Galbraith

      by wildcat6 on Tue Feb 11, 2014 at 05:11:58 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Right. I'll be happy when there are no health (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      WheninRome, TKO333

      insurance companies making a profit, so they won't have millions of our premium dollars to use as they see fit.

      •  gardensheila (0+ / 0-)

        If Insurance companies aren't making money selling legitimate services like Health care insurance, who will provide it?


        The Koch Brothers?


        Maybe we'll stop being on a perpetual "War Basis" and defer all that Military money to free Health Care for Americans?  

        Well? Who is going to pay for it?  Or do you want to have no health insurance for Americans because we're all immortal?


        •  Seriously? (0+ / 0-)

          So you're trying to argue that we should condone corporate profiteering as a quid pro quo for receiving health care?

          Let me see... what could POSSIBLY be wrong with having a corporation derive its profits by charging people for services that keep those people alive? I mean, after all, in the good ol' market-driven medical marketplace, your Aunt Millie can just go to the next doctor and get a competing bid on the treatments that keep her alive to see her kids grow up...

          •  Not sure I understand that commenter's (0+ / 0-)

            POV either. (I like the idea of ending the war footing and reallocating those funds for people's true benefit.) Clearly these debates aren't going away any time soon.

            Welcome from the DK Partners & Mentors Team. If you have any questions about how to participate here, you can learn more at the Knowledge Base or from the New Diarists Resources Diaries. Diaries labeled "Open Thread" are also great places to ask. We look forward to your contributions.

            Support Small Business: Shop Kos Katalogue If you'd like to join the Motor City Kossacks, send me a Kosmail.

            by peregrine kate on Fri Feb 14, 2014 at 06:36:32 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  But our "druthers" are not going to be enacted (0+ / 0-)

              without electing progressives to Congress, the White House and state legislatures.  And the biggest threat to progressives is that Obamacare will not be entrenched ENOUGH by November to stop the right wing cash machine.  The remedy to that INCLUDES getting more of us who do not have other alternatives signed up (or, in the red states, angry about NOT being allowed to get Medicaid) and if that takes, for now, the help of insurance companies, so be it.  We can get the progressives we elect as a result to raise taxes on the rich enough to "buy out" the incurance companies later.

              Strategically, it's like FDR and the allies not trying to fight Hitler and Stalin at the same time: instead, Stalin helped us beat Hitler, and with Hitler gone, we had the Cold War and eventually, Stalin's successors collapsed (not that things in Russia are perfect now, by any means).  With Stalin and Hitler allied against us, we would be speaking German (and there would be very few, if any, Bar Mitzvahs being celebrated).

              That's the point about the insurance companies helping progressives in the long run.

    •  Insurance Companies Pouring money into Obamacare (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      The best news in a year: in Years, in fact.

      They are the ones who are going to make a fortune selling insurance mandated by Obamacare, so all their advertising money is killing all the money now wasted by republicans who are still fighting it.  Even the Koch Brothers can't fight businesses who stand to profit by it, and it's a legitimate expense for the Insurance companies.

      Even though the ACA was invented at the Heritage Foundation by Baachus (now, thankfully shipped off to China), and doesn't have single payer like logical countries have, it's what's happening in the USA, and the Koch Bros & Republicans are getting what they deserve: outright rejection for fighting against making America a first-tier country re Healthcare Coverage, at last.  

      Not THE first tier Country, certainly, but at least as good as 3rd World Countries with respect for their Citizens. It's the most significant achievement by an American President since Social Security and Medicare. . . and it's been tried by all the Presidents in between, and they all failed.

      •  They are doing something right (0+ / 0-)

        I would rather for the insurance companies to support the ACA than oppose it. They will make a lot of unwarranted money however if we can get Americans insured and protected for bankruptcy for an illness, plus many other benefits so be it.

        •  Insurance Companies ARE supporting Obamacare. (0+ / 0-)

          Didn't you read the article?

          Insurance companies ARE supporting ACA because they are the beneficiaries of the Republican-designed ACA.

          But those are the facts of American Health Care: it's been tried by every President for decades, and IT NOW EXISTS.

          Once Insurance Companies support it, IT WILL HAPPEN BIG TIME, and that's the whole point.

          The more they support it, the less we taxpayers have to finance it.

          Does that sound like a good idea?

  •  Yes, but the Koch's have a free ally (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Sister Havana

    It's called Faux "News", where anti-Obamacare scare tactics are fulfilled nonstop, 24 hours a day. The insurance companies deep pockets aren't lined with enough cash to counter what Rupert Murdoch does for free fore the Koch's.

    Not sure which is giving the blowjobs to the other.

  •  Death Panels (0+ / 0-)

    Health Insurance company claims review committees.

    •  not necessarily. Might be better (0+ / 0-)

      than a single payer where congress could forbid certain treatments like contraception, abortion, and others. They can also cap total annual expenditure.

      There are claims review committees for Medicare.

      I'm asking you to believe. Not in my ability to bring about real change in Washington ... *I'm asking you to believe in yours.* Barack Obama

      by samddobermann on Wed Feb 12, 2014 at 01:38:00 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I hate 'em both (0+ / 0-)

    Let the insurance companies and the Koch brother both spend all their money battling each other... if they both go broke, we all win.

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