Ryan-aligned group pressures vulnerable Republicans to support healthcare bill

Ryan-aligned group pressures vulnerable Republicans to support healthcare bill
© Greg Nash

A group allied with House GOP leaders is targeting Republicans in competitive House districts with an ad campaign ahead of a potential vote this week on legislation to repeal and replace ObamaCare.

American Action Network (AAN) is launching digital ads on Monday through video, display ads and landing pages urging lawmakers to support the GOP leadership-backed bill, titled the American Health Care Act.

AAN has spent more than $10 million over the course of its advocacy campaign for the healthcare plan. It has targeted Republicans representing districts carried by Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Rodham ClintonGraham: Comey should be held accountable for acting on bad intel Hillary Clinton condemns 'racist abuse' in Portland attack Clinton returns to election night convention hall to talk about her new book MORE and in territory friendly to President Trump.

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Speaker Paul RyanPaul Ryan8th graders refuse to take photo with Paul Ryan Dems plot recess offensive on ObamaCare President Trump needs to make some huuuge changes, and soon MORE (R-Wis.) and his leadership team are aiming for a Thursday vote on the legislation. But it’s unclear whether the measure has enough votes to pass, due to concerns from the centrist and conservative wings of the House GOP.  

A sample digital ad says, “Tell Congress it’s time for better health care. Pass the American Health Care Act.”

“As conservatives, this is the moment we have been fighting for over the past eight years. It’s time to pass President Trump and Speaker Ryan’s conservative health care plan that will provide access to quality, affordable health care for all,” AAN executive director Corry Bliss said.

Two recent rounds of AAN’s TV ads and robocalls were aimed at skeptical conservatives, primarily members of the House Freedom Caucus, who said they will vote against the bill in its current form because they don't think it goes far enough to fully repeal the 2010 law.

But the latest round of ads target 29 House members who mostly represent districts expected to be competitive in the 2018 midterm elections. Some lawmakers on the list have said they oppose the legislation, such as Reps. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (Fla.) and Brian Fitzpatrick (Pa.), or who have expressed concerns, such as Reps. Darrell Issa (Calif.) and Leonard Lance (N.J.).

The ads will also air in a handful of districts represented by members of leadership, including Ryan, Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy (Calif.), House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Greg Walden (R-Ore.) and House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin BradyKevin BradyBorder-adjustment tax proposal at death’s door Mnuchin asks Congress for clean debt hike before August Overnight Finance: Inside Trump's first budget | 66 programs on the chopping block | Hearing highlights border tax divide | Labor to implement investment adviser rule MORE (Texas).