Ben Nelson to Run Television Ad Defending Health Care-Abortion Compromise

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Dec 30, 2009   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Ben Nelson to Run Television Ad Defending Health Care-Abortion Compromise

by Steven Ertelt Editor
December 30
, 2009

Lincoln, NE ( — One day after a new poll showed him tanking with Nebraska voters because of his decision to compromise his long-held pro-life views and become the 60th vote for the pro-abortion health care bill, Sen. Ben Nelson will run a television commercial during a college football bowl game to defend his decision.

Nelson will make his case for supporting the Senate government-run health care bill that forces taxpayers to fund abortions and would allow the Obama administration to make insurance companies pay for abortions with taxpayers’ premiums.

He will air a 30-second television spot during Wednesday night’s Holiday Bowl game featuring the University of Nebraska showing him talking directly into the camera.

"With all the distortions about health care reform, I want you to hear directly from me," the Democratic senator says in the ad, according to the Lincoln Journal Star newspaper.

Wearing a more casual open-necked shirt and sweater, Nelson will say during the Nebraska-University of Arizona football game: "I listened to you and took a common-sense approach to improve the bill."

"Now it lowers costs for families and small business, protects Medicare, finally guarantees coverage for pre-existing conditions and reduces the deficit. And it’s not run by the government," he will say. "I’m convinced this is right for Nebraska."

Oddly, the ad appears to make no attempt to respond to the biggest criticism — that Nelson worked with Senate Leader Harry Reid to include language in the health care bill that funds abortions.

Nebraska right to Life director Julie Schmit-Albin emailed yesterday before Nelson’s television commercial was made public.

She thinks Nelson "mis-judged the level of opposition to this legislation from his constituents or if he had already made a decision to never seek office again."

Schmit-Albin believes Nelson will be regarded in the future as a sellout on the health care bill and abortion.

"Senator Nelson had a chance to be the pro-life champion for the nation. People from across the country were contacting us excited that he appeared to be sticking to his guns on the Stupak abortion language. Had he done so he would have had the undying gratitude of multitudes of pro-life Americans, not to mention Nebraskans," she told

Nelson’s decision is clearly costing him support among Nebraska voters, a new Rasmussen poll shows.

The Rasmussen Reports survey shows that pro-life Republican Governor Dave Heineman would lead nelson if he challenged the senator for his 2012 re-election bid.

The telephone survey shows he would get 61% of the vote while Nelson would get just 30%.

Nelson was reelected to a second Senate term in 2006 with 64% of the vote so a poll having him with less than half of that mark reveals serious consequences for his decision.

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